Last Friday afternoon I finished work as normal and decided I wanted to have dinner somewhere in the city. First I was thinking about a pub meal but then decided to have a walk in the city around the Chinatown area. Firstly we considered choosing a random Chinese restaurant but as we moved further and further along Little Bourke my boyfriend suggested Gingerboy.
We recently had dinner at Ezard (read my review here: http://yosiefood.wordpress.com/2012/12/16/ezard/) and it was lovely. Given that Ezard & Gingerboy are owned by the same person we felt that Gingerboy would live up to our expectations. We had tried to book it at least twice last year at the last minute but on both occasions it was fully booked. So we walked up to the door with some hesitation, but we were lucky enough to secure a table. It was only 6pm on a Friday night so this worked in our favour, they also informed us that we needed to be out by 8pm but that wasn’t a problem for us at all.
We had the option of choosing the banquet where the chef would prepare dishes for us, but we decided to go out on our own and choose specific dishes from the menu that we thought we would enjoy. We decided on having three entrees and two mains, all to share.
The first entree served was Son in law eggs, chilli jam and asian herbs. The waiter came with specific instructions on how to eat it – we had to roll the egg around in the chilli jam, put it in our mouth and eat it whole. The chilli jam was delicious and complimented the runny yolk of the egg. This was an interesting dish.
The second entree was Tempura oysters, shredded iceberg and prik nam pla. This was one of the best oysters I’ve ever eaten! It was cooked so perfectly in the tempura, which obviously made it crispy. I loved this one.
Thirdly, we received Steamed wagyu and bamboo dumpling with cashew soy sauce. Well what can I say, was a fantastic and mouth watering dumpling perfectly matched with the peanut soy sauce (this was almost just a Satay sauce really, but worked very well). I wish we had more of these, but we still had our mains to come.
The first main was Whole fried baby snapper, roast chilli, lime dressing, hot and sour salad. Firstly I was a bit afraid of this – the chilli looked very spicy and I thought I might not be able to handle it. Luckily enough the chilli sauce was mild but very very tasty, I loved it.
The waiter carved the fish for us at the table, removing the meat from both sides so we could enjoy it easily.
I love eating snapper and order this quite often when I can. I was very pleased to discover that this is one of the very best I’ve ever had. The fish was very crispy and all of the flavours worked together.
The second main: Red duck leg curry, shallots, thai basil and coconut cream. My boyfriend always loves duck and it didn’t surprise me that he chose this dish. The curry was cooked perfectly with thai basil. He loved it and said it was possibly the best duck red curry he has ever had and he has had a few. The curry sauce was spicy but not completely overbearing and the duck was very tasty.
I also ordered a side dish called crispy fried sweet corn cakes. I was actually surprised when I saw this on the menu. This is my favourite snack from my childhood in Indonesia and I haven’t ever seen this this in any restaurants in Australia. When I was little I always asked my mother to cook this for me, and this tasted similar to how I remember she cooked it.
I had a lovely meal at Gingerboy and I’m glad I finally got to go there. It is obviously pricier than most Asian restaurants around the area but the food they do there makes it worthwhile. The dishes we had were all interesting yet delicious. I would love to return some time to sample some of the items on the menu that I didn’t get to try. I would recommend Gingerboy to anyone who likes this kind of South East Asian food who doesn’t mind spending a little extra.