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Crown Palace, Forest Hill/ South Vermont, Melbourne

Crown Palace on Urbanspoon The Yeaps brought me to this suburban yumcha place when  I stayed with them. Crown
may look like the typical Chinese restaurant which could be anywhere in the middle of USA or in Australia. There is adequate vehicle parking outside and the Burwood Highway has passing traffic. 
Once you step inside, the staff are generally friendly, the service is mostly quick and the food
comes with a purposeful pace.  You can then be in Chinatown of a capital city, and the tasty
servings do suggest that.  There is however much less noise and chatter when compared to downtown precincts.  Apart from yumcha, they also serve other aspects of Cantonese cuisine.

Business starts early and the place gets going by 11am.  You have the choice of round tables for ten persons to be seated, or smaller tables for two. The restaurant may have decor that may hark back to an earlier, but the trolleys and trays bearing bites of food do testify to the authenticity and experience of the cooks. There is no new fangled fusion food, but true-to-the heart steamed and deepfried variations that would be original to Guangdong and Hong Kong. I particularly like the braised chicken legs, whether marinaded with light vinegar or soy sauce, and the classic siew mai, those dainty dumplings with fillings of meshed prawn, pork and carrot.  Another staple I look forward to are steamed kai lan vegetable leaves and stalks, tender, light and juicy, dressed with oyster sauce.

Chinese food in Australia has moved significantly away from the dimsims, Mongolian lamb and fried rice to the diversity that we see today in capital cities and their suburbs - for example,  hand made cold noodles, dumplings with hot soup inside and the elegance of quality Beijing duck cuts today.  We also get more choices than southern Chinese offerings to encompass various styles from north-east China, Central Asia and Taiwan.  The Crown was previously named the Han and has survived various industry trends, changing demographics and competition from other cuisines from around the world.

My impressions of the Crown Palace, located at where Forest Hill meets Vermont South in the greater Melbourne region, are:

Atmosphere:  Not too noisy

Location:  Suburban

Taste: Authentic

People Engagement:  Friendly with a smile

Service:  Quick and responsive

Best Time to Visit:  Weekday lunch

Fav Dish Experienced:  Braised Chicken Legs, with crunchy skin and cartilege!

Would I Return?:  Always


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