14 October 2012

China Lane: Modern Asian, CBD Sydney (12 Oct 2012)

1 Angel Place, Sydney NSW 2000

A happy ending at China Lane

It's not very often I find myself being the only Asian dining in a Chinese restaurant but I can now add China Lane to that list. Staff were welcoming, professional and thankfully much friendlier than many other Chinese restaurants I've been to. With a table of eight it made sense to order the banquet menu ($50 per person) to sample a few dishes which left us comfortably full by the end of the dining experience. The kitchen catered for our pescetarian with a few vegetarian dishes which were well-liked. A cheeky named Happy Ending ($16) of Wyborowa vodka with coconut water, kaffir lime, and rock melon proved to be a nice start with a good balance of flavours — happy beginnings. The wine menu isn't cheap but the cheapest bottle of 2011 Snake & Herring 'Perfect Day' Sauvignon Blanc Semillon ($44 bottle) was enjoyable so there was not much hesitation when it came time to order another. 

The dish on the banquet menu I feared the most was the Crispy master stock pig’s ear but it actually ended up being one of my favourites. Kind of like crispy pork flavoured chips which would go down well with a beer as a bar snack, if they had a bar to sit down at. The Chilli lemongrass cuttlefish with garlic & chilli vinegar was delightfully tender with a decent chilli kick which I'd happily order again. The Soy braised crispy pork belly with chilli caramel had good flavour with a nice outer crisp of rendered fat although a bit more would have made it even better for me like the one I had at China Doll. For dessert the Coconut sago & black sticky rice hit the spot with enjoyable flavours and I liked the touch of orange zest in the black sticky rice to give it a bit of lift. The ambience and decor was pretty slick yet comfortable making it a very pleasant lunch that tempts me to return to try other dishes.

PROS: Quality ingredients, Interesting menu, Nice decor, Buzzing atmosphere, Efficient and professional service (Bradley)
CONS: Groups of 10 or more requires a credit card to secure booking plus a 10% surcharge is added to the bill, Wines are pricey, Popular place so best to book in advance
MUST TRY: Happy Ending cocktail, Crispy master stock pig’s ear, Chilli lemongrass cuttlefish, Soy braised crispy pork belly
VERDICT: Good service and an enjoyable banquet tempts me to return to try other dishes like the Pork and prawn sui mai, Sichuan chilli chicken wings, Salt & pepper prawns and Duck pancakes
Happy Ending - Wyborowa vodka with coconut water, kaffir lime, and rock melon ($16)

2011 Snake & Herring 'Perfect Day' Sauvignon Blanc Semillon, Margaret River WA ($44 bottle)

Plate of pickles (vegetarian option)

Crispy master stock pig’s ear 

Hervey Bay scallop with chilli, garlic, and pickled mustard 

Vegetable san choy bau (vegetarian option)

Crispy pork, coriander & dried scallop wonton with XO sauce

Chilli lemongrass cuttlefish with garlic & chilli vinegar

Sichuan chicken salad with cherry tomato, chilli & black vinegar

Sichuan vegetable salad with cherry tomato, chilli & black vinegar

Wok fried Asian mushrooms with tofu, asparagus & fermented bean curd

Jasmine rice

Pink snapper fillet with ginger soy & shallot

Chinese broccoli with soy and sesame

Soy braised crispy pork belly with chilli caramel 

Coconut sago & black sticky rice

Bill $512.50 for eight

Banquet menu $50 per person

Wine menu

Reflection shot

Table setting and menus

I seemed to be the only Asian dining in the restaurant that day

Private dining room


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China Lane on Urbanspoon


Sherrie Huang said...

Haha definitely looks like a step up from your average Chinese restaurants :P

Vivian - vxdollface said...

pretty cheap considering you had so many dishes and in cbd too! private dining room looks good, might go with family :)

Christine @ Cooking Crusade said...

great value for an upmarket modern Chinese place. love those lanterns out front!

Simon Leong said...

hi sherrie, you wouldn't know it's really a chinese restaurant until you checked out the menu. nice place for a special lunch i think.

hi vivian, you're probably right. leaving reasonably full was a good sign it was good value. hope you enjoy if you go.

hi christine, i'm already hoping to revisit to try a few other tempting dishes on the menu.

joey@FoodiePop said...

Cuttlefish and pig's ears sound like a great lunchtime meal. :-)

Simon Leong said...

hi joey, hope you enjoy if you get a chance to go. if you want to meet up for lunch one day let me know as i'm keen to revisit and try a few other dishes on the menu :-)

Anonymous said...

Looks really fantastic Simon but that bill really?

Chompchomp said...

I am totally craving chilli squid now! LIke right now. Why do your photos always have to make me so hungry!?

Simon Leong said...

hi anonymous, everyone thought quite reasonable for the price

hi chompchomp, i know what you mean. especially for a good salt and pepper squid :-)

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