One fine summer night, Stephen and I were out in the city, when we decided we felt like some Peking duck. Off we walked, from the new Westfields on Pitt Street to Chinatown, and when we got there we decided to choose our restaurant based on the hawker who stood out the front. Hingara Chinese Restaurant won, with the very polite lady offering us delectable meals at great prices, all in the cutest little girl voice we ever heard.
We were seated by a polite, yet stern lady who seemed to be running things. She gave us menus, jasmine tea, and time to select our meals. Although we were determined to have our Peking duck, we were interested in some of the other dishes as well, and so ordered more than was prudent.
The spring rolls were crispy on the outside, and full of juicy cabbage, onion, carrot and other vegetables, served with a delicious sweet and sour sauce. One thing I definitely noticed is that they weren't incredibly oily, as one is likely to get at most establishments. Great!
Peking duck is usually served in one of three ways: in a small pancake, as San Choy Bow, or as a dumpling. In ordering the half Peking duck, we were offered both the pancake and the san choy bow.
The first lot of Peking duck was served on a pancake, with some sweet hoy sin sauce and a stalk of spring onion. Our waitress assembled it for us, and we took our first bites eagerly. The pancake was very thin and easy to bite through, although it still gave us that satisfying resistance. The spring onion gave a crispy and fresh dimension to the dish. The peking duck itself was fantastic - the flesh tender and easy to pull apart, the flavour slightly salty, and the skin crispy and sweet. The hoy sin sauce tied these elements together and complemented the duck really well.
The next dish was the San Choy Bow, and it was delightful. The crisp iceberg lettuce cups encased a delicious mixture of shredded duck, soft noodles, and onion cooked in a small amount of hoy sin.
The handmade Shanghai noodles were firm in a way that was pleasant to bite into, and the bean sprouts provided a great contrast with their crunchiness. The spring onion brought a sharp aroma and flavour to the dish, and the chili, while hot, did have a lot of flavour.
This restaurant is not too far from Central Station, and is pretty good value for money. The dishes are beautifully prepared, and the service, although a bit brusque, is fast and efficient.
Hingara Chinese Restaurant
82 Dixon St
Phone: 02 9212 2169