Mama Mulan opens at Chatswood Concourse, with designer Paul Papadopoulos from DS17 creating an interior that will mix antiques with new fixtures.
"It is a modern take on traditional Chinese dining and home spaces," he says.
"Mulan, in Chinese origin, translated to wood orchid or magnolia blossom … with mama representing experience and warmth, like you are being cooked for by mama."
Former Lotus chef Marble Ng heads up a menu focussing on northern Chinese cuisine, with a particular emphasis on the province of Shandong, and its specialities such as braised pork belly.
Expect hand-pulled noodles, live seafood (hello snow crab) and fresh dumplings, alongside signatures such as dandan noodle soup and deep-fried pork ribs with garlic.
A spokeswoman for the start-up says Chatswood was selected because it is like a mini-CBD on the north shore, with a wide variety of cultures.
They're also aiming big: "Mama Mulan's goal is to be the best Chinese restaurant on the north shore."
Open Mon-Sat 11.30am-3pm and 5.30-9.30pm; Sun 11.30am-3pm and 5.30-9pm.
Mama Mulan, Level 1, The Concourse, Chatswood (above Willoughby City Library), 02 9904 7663, mamamulan.com.au.