Monday, 27 September 2010

dainty sichuan, south yarra: feisty flavours

My friend Sharon is a vegetarian, and Dainty Sichuan is where we always go with a few friends when she is back in Melbourne for a visit. No need to worry about bland or boring vegetarian dishes at Dainty Sichuan: the flavours here are bold and eager to make an impact.

We have accumulated a list of favourites over time, and we had the usual suspects on Friday. First up, stir-fried tea tree mushrooms. The mushrooms are tender, and the garlic shoots provide a nice crunch.

stir-fried tea tree mushrooms
Next, fish-flavoured eggplant. Despite the name, this is actually a vegetarian dish - the eggplants are flavoured with seasonings that were traditionally used to cook fish. These saucy deep-fried eggplants are almost liquefied inside, and utterly delicious.

fish-flavoured eggplant
The spicy tofu threads is a cold dish, and it's a good one that spurs on the appetite for more rice.

spicy tofu threads
And of course, the mapo tofu. This normally has pork in it, so we asked for it without. There's a lot of zing in this one, thanks to the abundance of Sichuan pepper, and the tofu is silky soft. 

mapo tofu
The garlic cucumber offers a cool respite from the heat, while still giving an unabashed kick to the tastebuds. 

garlic cucumber
Dainty Sichuan can be an engagingly spicy affair, depending on what is ordered, but for those who shy away from heat, the mild dishes are enjoyable too. If I do have one gripe it would be that the use of oil can sometimes appear quite liberal - but I don't come here often enough for that to pose a health hazard, so that's alright!

Dainty Sichuan on Urbanspoon


  1. that food look BEYOND - can u pack it up and ship it my way?! YUM!

    PS: i'm hosting my FIRST give-away - come on by and enter!!! - $45 worth of goodness!

    *kiss kiss*

    ~Tiptoe Butterfly~

  2. Yum, wish I lived in your neighborhood. It all looks so fresh and bright and DELICIOUS. Craving some mushrooms with garlic shoots now...

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    comment didn't show up. Grrrr... well I'm not writing all that over again.
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