Perth’s Chinese food options have a come a long way from ordering-by-numbers and fluorescent sauces. Whether you’re in the market for note-perfect regional specialties or Cantonese classics handled with reverence, these 10 restaurants prove that east and west make superb bedfellows.
In the past, Perth’s late-night Chinese dining options tended to revolve around the deep-fried and the sweet. Lin’s Cuisine, mercifully, ups the ante with a sprawling menu of mainland Chinese favourites. Our go-tos? The Sichuan yabby hotpot (complete with gloves and towelettes), meaty kou shui ji (literally mouth-watering poached chicken in chilli oil) and the restorative herbal broths.
910 Albany Highway, East Victoria Park; (08) 9361 1880
8 On The Point
As far as places to queue for weekend yum cha go, alongside the Swan River is a good one. Once seated at 8 On The Point, however, the focus shifts sharply from outside to inside as staff dispense excellent dim sum to linen-dressed tables. Purist? Go the har gow (prawn dumplings) and dainty xiao long bao (Shanghai-style soup dumplings). Non-traditionalist? Cold chicken feet or cute rubber ducks fashioned out of mango jelly could be up your alley.
306 Riverside Drive, East Perth; (08) 9221 2288
Kung Fu Kitchen
Famous for its fiery and numbing flavours, Sichuan cuisine has undoubtedly been the big mover in Perth’s Chinese food circles. One of the genre’s key proponents west of the Nullarbor is Kung Fu Kitchen, a buzzy dining room specialising in eye-wateringly spicy hotpots, braised dishes (particularly of the offal variety), and soothing chilled salads and pickles.
139 Newcastle Street, Northbridge; (08) 6260 2297
Mom Dumpling House
Homely Mom is one of Perth’s precious few diners specialising in the robust, often cumin-scented flavours of China’s north. As the name suggests, hearty dumplings – pork and cabbage, say – are a focal point but the rest of the menu warrants equal consideration. Herbal-braised pork trotters pack flavour for days while a refreshing cold noodle salad demonstrates the cuisine’s lighter side.
687 Albany Highway, East Victoria Park; (08) 9470 2088
Crown Perth’s showpiece Chinese dining room looks every bit as opulent as its seven-figure fit-out might suggest. Yet for all its gilded, lacquered-timber beauty, Silks has the substance to support its big-night-out style. Polished Cantonese is the restaurant’s forte, from superb roast meat and reverently handled seafood to some of the city’s most elegant – albeit pricey – dim sum.
Crown Perth, Great Eastern Highway, Burswood; 1800 556 688
Andly Private Kitchen
One does not simply walk in off the street to this low-key dining room, hiding in plain sight beneath an apartment block. Reservations are essential: chef Li “Andly” Yuekuan prepares a tasting menu for every party tailored to guests’ tastes and budgets. Enjoy seafood and chilli? Request the finger-licking Sichuan-style yabbies. Want something meatier? Twice-cooked lamb shank is served with featherweight pancakes. Andly’s signature Wagyu dumplings, meanwhile, are equally light on their feet.
1/50 Oxford Close, West Leederville; 0412 421 261
Hong Kong BBQ House
The debate about Perth’s best Cantonese-style roast meats is a heated one, but this Northbridge veteran’s name comes up regularly in the discussion. Hong Kong BBQ House’s siu yook – crunchy, blistered and salty on the outside; juicy and yielding within – is the city’s benchmark for roast pork, although the rest of the menu delivers similar Cantonese thrills.
76 Francis Street, Northbridge; (08) 9228 3968
A karaoke hotspot after dark, Dragon Palace is one of the few places in Perth where one might want to return to the scene of the crime on the morning after. While this veteran restaurant puts in a bravura performance across the dim-sum spectrum, its dessert offerings (Impossibly flaky egg tarts! Those liquid-centred snow mountain egg-yolk buns!) are particularly strong.
66 Francis Street, Northbridge; (08) 9228 2888
Mr Bun embodies the at-times paradoxical nature of eating Chinese food out west. This no-frills eatery might be named for its (very serviceable) roujiamo (essentially a Chinese hamburger), but its best on ground is the handmade kudaimian – thick, flat seatbelt-like noodles, synonymous with northern China, served with red-braised beef. Napkin tucked into shirt recommended.
148 Murray Street, Perth; (08) 6248 2898
Two words: durian mochi. This cult-dessert-in-waiting showcasing Asia’s most divisive fruit is exclusive to Canton Lane’s Belmont outpost and is the restaurant’s hottest item. Canny eaters will put in an order as soon as they’re seated to secure a serve while they lay waste to the restaurant’s equally impressive dim sum.
227 Belmont Avenue, Cloverdale; (08) 9477 2529
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