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Saturday, January 19, 2013

food people feed me: chin chin

As much as I love to knock about in my beloved but hilariously unweildy kitchen (I'm fairly certain it was designed for a 4 foot nothing Italian grandmother circa 1960 something - all low tabletops, linoleum in varying shades of brown and cupboards that refuse to just. stay. shut),  I also adore chucking on a dress, running a brush through my (equally unweildy) hair and dining out! I waste precious hours scanning menus online and emailing restaurants and cafes to find out whether their kitchen is able to feed me, and most of the time, they are (albeit with varying levels of success).

This year, as well as blogging about stuff that happens in my kitchen, I'll also try to include regular posts about the kitchens that feed me (without me having to do a thing but plant by butt down on a seat and order). If you have any restaurant recommendation, by all means, give them to me!

Up first is Chin Chin, located on Flinders Lane in Melbourne's CBD.

First hot tip: unless you have a fetish for queuing, do arrive before 5pm. My party arrived at about 4:45pm, waltzed in and were immediately seated on one of the several empty tables, but two hours later, as we departed, there was a veritable throng of people clustering to get in. Not my idea of fun, especially after a long day at the office. Some reviewers on Urbanspoon even claim wait times of three hours - this would surely result in my intestinal lining beginning to devour, absorb and assimilate itself from hunger, so no, not advisable. Arrive early.

Whilst the menu at Chin Chin certainly doesn't offer a whole lot of vegan options, there was enough variety of the menu to keep me happy. Though in the end I ended up sharing two mains and brown rice (yes! brown rice!) with a friend, there was a vegan-friendly sounding entree of DIY rice paper rolls, and a potentially vegan dessert (black rice pudding) both of which I intend to investigate on follow up visits.

My pal and I settled on the two vegan curries - a dry tofu pad ped packed with fresh herbs, eggplant and baby corn (that never resided in can) and a rich yellow curry full of chunks of soft pumpkin, smokey eggplant and toothsome (what a word!) tofu.



Both dishes were ridic good - fresh, lovingly prepared and packed full of enough veggies and herbs that it totally balanced out how much I actually ate, right?

I accompanied my meal with a deliciously refreshing coconut, watermelon and apple slushie (okay, so it had a bit of vodka in it too!). I thought the decorative watermelon rind was an apple, and looked quite the fool when I heartily bit into it! Ah, the joys of being my dining companion.




Chin Chin
125 Flinders Lane
Melbourne
(03) 8663 2000

3 comments:

  1. Another place to add to my must-try list, your meals sound pretty good :)

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  2. Great to see you back on the blog! Chin Chin is consistently excellent, but a bit of a trial to visit because of the queues - we're about due another visit though.

    Have you tried lunch at the new(ish) Mankoushe cafe (next to the bakery) - best recent addition to the Melb cafe scene I reckon.

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    1. Hi Michael! I'm sorry, missed this comment entirely until now. I did try it for breakfast a few weeks ago; they had nothing exclusively vegan on the menu but easily whipped me up a chickpea stew breakfast feast. I loved it!!!

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