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Twice I have tried to book at HuTong in the city and twice I’ve been thwarted. I need to plan ahead, at least half a week in advance I think. On this second occasion, I decided to make a booking at HuTong in South Yarra. They can’t be all too different ?? Urbanspoon ratings beg to differ - there is currently a 13% difference in the number of likes… granted there are more votes for the CBD one but it’s still the general consensus!
What lies behind the dragon door handle??
Behold, one typical Asian banquet-looking restaurant. Plus the standard tinsel decorations during Christmas time. Yep, oh so Asian!
Another shot of the interior.
The kitchen area, behind the glass. Dumplings and ducks. We had come to this restaurant in search of only dumplings but also ended up with duck. Mmmm.
I know it’s just standard white coloured dinner ware but nonetheless I thought it was a nice looking set.
Most of the dishes we ordered. We did the maths and decided that 6 dumplings and 2 pieces of peking duck each was not enough (you guessed it, we were so hungry at the time of ordering) and ordered an extra noodle dish to share. Yes, it turned out to be too much food. Dumpling skin = thick and filling. Peking duck = heavy/oily and therefore also filling. We will know this for next time.
The duck. Mmmm, check out that oily glaze on the skin. So tasty but so bad for you.
The Peking Duck in the pancake.
This wasn’t the best duck we’ve had but it was good enough to satisfy our duck cravings.
Wontons with hot chilli sauce.
Not everyone liked this dish but I was actually quite a fan. From the amount of soy sauce it was drenched in, it looked as though it was going to taste overly salty. Fortunately, it wasn’t too salty and together with the chilli paste, it was the perfect amount of salty and spicy.
Pan fried dumplings.
Definitely not as good as the pan fried dumplings from Shanghai Village. I expected the exterior of the dumpling to have that tell-tale sign of fried’ness: that tinge of golden brown. This was notably absent. The only sign of ‘fried’, if any, would be that thin layer extending from the dumplings (seen better in the photo below). Soy sauce and chilli paste was needed for these dumplings because it tasted quite bland without. The skin was thicker and more flour-y than usual.
Close up of the pan friend dumplings.
Szechuan ‘Dan Dan’ noodles.
Another disappointing dish. With all that sauce and goomph on the top of the dish, we expected the noodles to be jam-packed with flavouring. Whatever that flavouring was supposed to be (none of us had a clue what ‘Dan Dan’ meant but decided try it). Instead, the noodles tasted bland. And we were also quite full by this point, so not much effort was made to try and finish the boring and bland-in-taste noodles.
Xiao long baos/soup filled dumplings.
Quite good. Very soupy - it oozes out as soon as you bite into it so be sure to use one of those Asian soup spoons!
Overall, not that wowed by HuTong Prahran. It’s starting to make a little sense why there is such a big difference between the number of likes of both restaurants. Providing the CBD one tastes much better that is… I guess we shall have to try it to see for ourselves. Third time’s the charm?
HuTong Dumpling Bar
The Cullen Hotel,
161 Commercial Rd,
Prahran, Victoria, 3141