Dainty Sichuan

176 Toorak Road South Yarra, VIC 3141

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Opening hours Mon & Wed-Fri 11.30am-2.30pm,Sat-Sun noon-2.30pm,Sun-Mon & Wed-Thurs 4.30pm-9.30pm,Fri-Sat 4.30pm-10pm
Features BYO, Vegetarian friendly, Groups
Prices Moderate (mains $20-$40)
Payments eftpos
Phone 03 9078 1686

The 'dainty' must be ironic: there's nothing subtle about the food here, an antidote to minimalist, natural flavours. You may need help to navigate the sprawling menu, where mains and starters are scattered throughout. Go the aggressively spiced cumin lamb (if you dare), a huge dish of mouth-scorching lamb marinated in cumin, scattered with chilli seeds and served with spring onion shoots; or the oil-slicked dried green beans- crunchy, salty and covered in fried pork mince. For a bit of fun, there are eggplant chips covered in a sweet, fishy, toffee-like batter. Sit upstairs, for a boisterous food-hall feel, or down, where hotpots bubble on the tables.