New Flavour Restaurant
New Flavour is one of the “go to’s” of Dominion Road Chinese restaurants, but some how I had missed it in my Cheapeats expeditions. We first went on a Tuesday evening – and managed to hit the one night of the week that New Flavour is closed! Better luck on the Wednesday night when we went early and had no problem getting a table.
I picked up a dumpling order here another evening and saw people literally queuing up at the door! New Flavour is well know for its dumpling repertoire, all made on the premises. There are pork, chicken, lamb and beef dumplings, and the night we visited one of the staff had set up ingredients for making a batch. She was pinching off pieces of dough from a long roll at a speed that made your eyes blur.
There is also a huge variety of stir-fried dishes, fried noodles, soups, sizzling dishes, casseroles and vegetables. They offer both sweet and savoury pancakes and there is a section of dishes from North Western China. Not much in the way of dessert – just apples, kumara or egg (!) in hot toffee ($14).We opted for the pork and chive dumplings ($10), beef with kale ($12) and for our daughter, pork ribs in sweet and sour sauce ($12), plus a bowl of steamed rice to share.Each dish was delicious, starting with the pork ribs. The meat was so tender it was literally falling off the bones and the sauce was not overly sugary. Just perfect and our daughter used all the extra sauce on her rice.My husband and I ate every bit of the beef slices and kale. We were expecting the European curly kale, but instead it was similar to choy sum, with stalks and a spinach-like top. There were lots of bits of garlic mixed in and the sauce added a light savoury taste.I indulged in having the dumplings fried, and they arrived with one side nice and crispy. There was definitely a lot of chives mixed in with the pork – perhaps a little too much for our taste. Next time I would try the pork and fennel. That said, we still managed to scoff the lot!
During the meal our tea pot was topped up with water whenever we requested and my husband drank a cold beer that we brought with us. There are non-alcoholic cold drinks available for purchase and the restaurant is licensed for BYO.
During our meal the restaurant became very busy, and there was a mix of both Asian and non-Asian clientele. Obviously they all know when they are on to a Good Thing. There is no decor and service is functional, but the food is very good and brought out quickly. And if you feel the urge to enjoy good Chinese food in the middle of the night, this is your place. They are open until the wee hours most days.