Yum Cha is one of my favourite meals of all time, and I’ve always been quite disappointed that it’s just a lunch option. I mean, who hasn’t ever had dim sum cravings at night? I had heard last year that there was a new Yum Cha restaurant in the Queen Victoria Building (QVB) but I only recently found out their secret of differentiation – they have Yum Cha until 8pm. Winning.
Fat Buddha is located on the top level of the QVB right next to Yama and occupies a large space overlooking the bustling George and Market Streets. QVB traditionally isn’t known to be a dining precinct but this just means that at dinner time there’s a different laidback and tranquil atmosphere and also a good chance of a seat without booking.
Chicken Sang Choy Bow (4pcs) – $22.80
We kickstart the meal with some Chicken Sang Choy Bow, which consists of crunchy lettuce cups containing a stir-fried filling of chicken, onions, shallots, chestnuts and mushrooms. These can be a bit messy to eat with the filling falling out, but it’s all part of the fun. They’re very tasty on their own but we’re also given a small dish of sauces and I add some hoi sin sauce on top which brings out the flavours of the chicken filling.
Chicken Dumplings with Scallop – $9.50
Next up is a Yum Cha dish which we’re so excited to order for dinner. Unlike other places, Fat Buddha provides Yum Cha similar to how Hong Kong restaurants do it; a menu list is a provided and you tick what you want. This ensures that the dishes are all freshly made-to-order and haven’t been sitting in a trolley for a long time. We opt for the Chicken Dumplings with Scallops – this is a premium interpretation of the traditional Siu Mai dim sum which doesn’t normally contain scallops. It’s succulent and juicy, bound well together by the glutinous looking wonton skin. You can also tell it’s been steamed fresh as it doesn’t stick to the bamboo steamer.
Fried E-fu Noodle in Crabmeat Sauce – $28.80
We then get some E-fu noodles which are cooked al dente – they are served slightly chewier and are quite light tasting. It’s scattered with crab meat and shallots in a light egg sauce. I quite like this type of noodle as it’s not particularly sauce heavy compared to most other Chinese noodle dishes.
Shredded Beef Peking Style – $24.80
Our last dish for the night at the waiter’s recommendation is the Shredded Beef cooked in Peking Style. These are fried, small pieces of beef which are covered in a sticky sauce (think sweet & sour mixed with barbeque) and are crispy when eaten. They’re very tasty but the portion is much too big for our party of two, so it’s best shared with at least four people.
Overall, Fat Buddha is a great addition to the quiet QVB dining scene. I think the prices are a bit expensive though especially with Chinatown just down the road, but is still a great option for Town Hall/Wynyard workers who would otherwise only have Westfield Sydney’s Phoenix, Palace Chinese in Piccadilly Arcade and Merivale’s Mr. Wong as Yum Cha choices (which are all on a similar price scale). The great thing though is if you’re like me, you’re also craving for the odd dim sum or too at night and it’s always nice to have that optional extra variety.
Excuse Me Waiter dined as guests of Fat Buddha
Level 2, QVB Market Street End
455 George St, Sydney NSW 2000
Ph: (02) 9264 9558