The ABCs of ABCs #6 – How to pick a good Chinese restaurant

The ABCs of ABCs #6 – How to pick a good Chinese restaurant

The ABCs of ABCs #6 – How to pick a good Chinese restaurant

There’s no easy way to say this because it’s likely to offend a few people. I’m not necessarily saying it’s right – I’m just pointing out the way things are. So here are the general rules we follow:

Is it filled with Westerners? Avoid it.

Is it filled with Asians? Go for it.

Is there a queue? Shut up and get in line already.

It’s simple, really: Westerners tend to go for the flashy, touristy stuff. Or at least they have a very different idea of what it ought to be. You know, deep-fried, sweet, salty, peppery stuff, with the exotic names and the try-hard MasterChef-style creative flourishes that frankly make people like me baulk… not all Westerners are like that, of course, but their tastes do have a habit of dictating what appears in the menu. And it’s those tastes that drive people like me away.

I don’t know about other Asians, but I often breath a sigh of relief when my favourite restaurants fail to make the “Sydney’s best yum cha” or “Sydney’s best dumplings” lists of vanity sites like Broadsheet.

But this place – KIN by us – is a place I’m happy to share. It’s a fusion Asian cafe and the owners are a pair of minor television celebrities, so there’s no need for them to pander. Their ingredients include “crunchy bits” and their congee is pretty damned good.

The ABCs of ABCs is a light-hearted attempt to explain the ins and outs of the Australian-Born Chinese culture for Caucasians who can’t make any sense of it. There’s a lot of idiosyncratic behaviour I get asked the same questions about, so I’m going to do my best to answer them. Call it my way of bridging the gap between cultures. 

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One thought on “The ABCs of ABCs #6 – How to pick a good Chinese restaurant

  1. I am Chinese who has lived in New Zealand for over 30 years. There are good Chinese places I eat at that have changed clientele over the years. One in particular, we visited with my family on Monday night. It used to be all Chinese diners, but now the split is about 50/50. Westerners are starting to realise what good food is. Not the flashy overpriced stuff.

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