Chin Chin Restaurant Review
In the culinary circuit of any city there’s always one place being talked about in fervent, hysteric tones. In Melbourne, that restaurant is Chin Chin. When rumours mill around of a three-hour wait for a prime dinner spot, or the impossibility of securing a table start to spread, that’s when you know you’ve made it as a culinary establishment.
With a walk-in only policy - except for one table of 10-12 - the allure of Chin Chin begins with its reputation for exquisite cuisine and peaks with its exclusivity. There’s nothing more a foodie loves than great tasting food, unless its great tasting food they can’t have.
The best way to secure yourself immediate seating is to get there early. Proper early. Go at 5pm and you’ll be seated and eating within the half hour. Around 6pm the wait is already at the hour mark and the line is going out the door. Arrive early or wait for hours, either way, get to Chin Chin.
Every torturous moment waiting is made up for a thousand times over when you sample each tasty morsel on the menu. Executive Chef Benjamin Cooper’s menu offers a fusion of South East Asian cuisines (including all your favourites: Salt and Pepper Calamari, Pad Thai, Rendang and Massaman Curry) with some elaborate adaptations. They’re made to share and you can choose from a selection of entrees (including DIY spring rolls and chili-salt chicken wings), a variety of enticing salads, rich curries, barbeque mains, and a tempting dessert range.
All sauces, pastes and relishes are made in-house and the dishes are created with the freshest ingredients - it’s not hard to understand how Chin Chin has carved itself a plum position on the culinary to-do-list of most Melburnians. The sauces are rich, the meat tender and the fresh vegetables are crisp and bursting with flavour. For all the hype, you might imagine hefty price tags to accompany the flavour filled menu, but that’s where you’d be wrong.
With entrees averaging at $14, and mains anywhere from $16 - $34, you can easily walk away satisfied and slightly tipsy, your wallet only $40 lighter. With rave reviews from patrons filing out of this elusive gem and a vibrant atmosphere to pair, the waiting times do not seem likely to shorten any time soon. Opened 11am – late, taste and see how Melbourne’s Chin Chin lives up to the hype and then some.