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How Melbourne is Becoming a Sustainable, Thriving Food City

How Melbourne is Becoming a Sustainable, Thriving Food City


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May 10, 2014

By

Food Tank

Melbourne, Australia is recognizing the impact food has on the health and well-being of its community and is committed to promoting a healthy food system.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Attention food-court lovers: this is where to eat the best authentic Asian food in Melbourne

Drive about 15 minutes from the centre of Melbourne, and you’ll hit the reasonably innocuous suburb of Box Hill. Somewhere around the 1970s, this predominantly English and Australian neighbourhood began its evolution into one of the city’s great (and possibly most overlooked) food destinations.

A small Vietnamese community, seeking a post-war new life, arrived in Box Hill, becoming a nucleus for Chinese and South East Asian migrants, each bringing with them their stories, culture and most importantly, their food.

The great thing about discovering all the food treasures that Box Hill has to offer is that most of them are packed into an area small enough to wrap your arms around. It’s a hotspot for everything from the most impressive produce you’ll see anywhere in Melbourne to eateries and, naturally, it’s a living example of the fact that Asians do food courts better than anyone else in the world.

Food writer, chef and Melbourne culinary legend Tony Tan has been visiting here for many years. “When the Chinese community embraced Box Hill, it changed the entire dynamic of the neighbourhood,” he says.

So where do you start? If you’re Tony, or just a dumpling fiend, start at Kitchen Republik. Modelled on a successful Taiwanese eatery chain, it’s a collection of vendors doing just one or two things well, from Taiwanese beef noodles to xiao long bao all under one roof. Just press the handy doorbell on the table for prompt service. Crystal Jade Xiao Long Bao make several iterations of this Shanghainese classic, from OG to OTT. Whether you go fancy with white truffle ($7.5 – $12.50) or keep it simple ($6.50 – $11.50), the pastry is impossibly fine and filled with a broth of impressive depth.

Head on out into the mall for a (not so small) bowl of noodles (around $13.80) at Tina’s Noodle Kitchen. One of Melbourne’s first families of Chinese food, this Tina we speak of is none other than she of Dainty Sichuan fame. Her namesake noodle house now has a number of venues around town, but when in Box Hill. You’ll also find her newest addition, Little Sichuan not far away a newer style of hotpot we’re seeing more of in Melbourne, where you fill up your bowl with the ingredients you want, pay by weight, and let them do the rest.

Moving from Sichuan to Hong Kong for glossy, lacquered barbecued meats glistening in the window, Roast Duck Inn is undoubtedly the place to go for the best roast duck in Box Hill, but also for Hong Kong BBQ style eats. And if you’re really duck obsessed, Dumpling King’s Sichuan tea-smoked version ($25.80) is also assuredly all that it’s quacked up to be.

Glossy, lacquered duck at Roast Duck Inn is a must.

Onto the king of all food courts: Box Hill Central. The main food court features Uighur, Sichuan, Cantonese and Taiwanese snacks, to name but a few of the regions it covers. Head to Pancake Village for jianbing ($6) savoury filled crepes that are arguably one of China’s favourite street food breakfasts. For fans of fusion, Home Souv is a jianbing-meets-souvlaki hybrid worth trying ($9.50).

Grain Asian Dessert is a must for pastry-based dim sum classics like char siu puffs - flaky, golden pastry, with tender char siu pork at its heart, while Magic Cuisine is a must for all things Chinese charcuterie, from spicy marinated pig’s ears to pickles galore.

Walk off the food coma with a stroll around the fresh produce section, from the sublime to the obscure, whether it’s goth-looking black-skinned silkie chickens, glistening seafood, jewel-bright fruit and veg or offal galore, you may soon reconsider where you do your weekly shop.


Watch the video: Self sustainable zero waste productive home in Melbourne demonstrates future. Gardening Australia (July 2022).


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