Chinese food in Melbourne

We’ve been here one day and I’ve already had the opportunity to try a couple of dumpling places.

First up Hutong Dumpling Bar provided a small, good selection including the – I suspect ubiquitous – Xiaolong Bai. Suffice to say we completely failed the suck, slurp and eat trick to these.

We had an opportunity to hone our skills in this department today at lunch when we went to The Oriental Tea House on Chapel Street. I was expecting something special here, partly because I like David’s Off Chapel, partly because the internet makes anything look good, but in practice it was ordinary. The octopus was notably tough (I also found the taste distasteful, if I may put it that way) and the duck pancakes were served prepared and were utterly forgettable. We had nothing that isn’t much better done in many other places.

To add insult to injury, when we walked down the road to The Globe, thinking cake and tea would be just the way to finish – it isn’t there! This Melbourne institution has gone. In its place is Osti. On the internet The Globe still has a web presence and I don’t see one for Osti, so I guess this has all happened very recently. Not a cake to be seen, at any rate.

On way or another, today I wished we’d settled for David’s again. Last visit it was one of a couple of places in Melbourne that satisfied a need for an Asian fix….Of all the bad food served in Europe, Asian is worst, not least Chinese.

David's off Chapel
David’s off Chapel

Now that I’ve been disappointed by The Oriental Teahouse, I’m a little less inclined to go back to David’s. But maybe it’s unfair to tar the one with the experience of the other.

David's off Chapel  (2)

My recollection is of good food and ambience….

David's off Chapel  (5)

David's off Chapel

In ten days there is a lot of eating to do in Melbourne. David’s might have to wait for a revist until next time.


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