Classic and reinterpreted Cantonese cuisine served at cavernous colonial-era themed restaurant
November 11th, 2014
Opened in 2012 to considerable acclaim, Mr. Wong continues to attract an impressive number of patrons – for both lunch and dinner – into its expansive, multi-leveled space. Renowned equally for it’s consummate renditions of Cantonese cuisine as for the intriguing colonial-era inspired decor, Mr. Wong is conveniently located in the heart of the CBD , albeit discreetly within a re-purposed 19th Century warehouse on a nondescript city laneway. Conceived and operated by Sydney’s preeminent hospitality group, the family-owned Merivale company, Mr. Wong deftly captures the international dining zeitgeist – introducing to Sydney a contemporary re-interpretation of traditional Cantonese cuisine, served within a visually dramatic atmosphere. Mr. Wong is located adjacent to other Merivale-owned venues – including the hip Establishment boutique hotel – and the cluster of restaurants and bars within the flagship Establishment building fronting George Street.
Heading up the culinary team are acclaimed chefs Dan Hong and Eric Koh. Locally raised with a Vietnamese-Australian background, head chef Dan Hong first introduced his creative take on classic Cantonese cuisine at the sibling Sydney restaurant Ms. G’s – and at Mr.Wong his culinary style is elevated to another level with a masterful array of both classic and re-interpreted Cantonese dishes. From an almost encyclopedic menu of Cantonese cuisine, stand out specialties include the roasted duck, seafood and pork dishes. Adding further allure to Mr Wong, Singaporean chef Eric Koh leads the dim sum kitchen, turning out his consummate repertoire of dim sum specialties, well-honed from his cooking at renowned Michelin-starred London restaurant Hakkasan. From an extensive selection (served only at lunchtime), dishes such as the Tobiko, scallop and prawn shumai; Pork xiao lung bao; and Crispy pork and asparagus wonton with Szechuan sauce; exemplify technique and authenticity.
An extensive wine list features remarkably deep selections of varietals, with a particular focus on Rieslings as an ideal accompaniment to Cantonese cuisine. Other highlights include well-compiled lists of Champagnes, Pinot Noirs and Bourdeaux. Other beverages are headlined by the signature cocktails from the bar. Incorporating Chinese flavour inflections – and ingredients specific to different Chinese provinces – each cocktail is designed to pair harmoniously with the cuisine.
Within the expansive, multi-level space, diners can encounter the gleaming open kitchen showcasing specialty roast meats and dim sum, and a series of engaging dining spaces of varying scale and mood. The meticulously executed decor is infused with a colonial-era ethos – referencing the indulgent lifestyles of both 1930’s Shanghai and French Indochina. Upper level dining options include seats at the kitchen counter, a central section of open-plan of table settings, and the adjacent bar space with high tables. Descending the steel and timber staircase that wraps around the imposing vertical wine cellar, the lower level reveals a voluminous, high-ceilinged space, replete with large semi-private round tables for small groups, an oyster bar, and generously spaced tables across the main floor.
Open daily, Mr. Wong, with its convenient downtown location, is a popular destination for business and social lunches, also attracting a vibrant full house most evenings for dinner and drinks. Bookings are highly recommended. A number of private rooms are also available for small groups and parties. Refer to the Mr. Wong Facebook Page for updates on promotions and special events.