Simons Peking – Box Hill, Vic, AU

Simons Peking Duck Restaurant
Box Hill, Vic, AU

Simons Peking is considered an institution. I’d heard of it before and have always wanted to go and finally got the opportunity one Sunday night with a group of about 9 people.
We ordered 4 ducks for 9 people and had planned on getting a bunch of other dishes, however they have a rule that only allows you to order two other dishes with a duck. We ended up not bothering with the extra dishes as the first option came with stir fried crispy duck noodles and duck bone soup.

So as per tradition, when the duck comes out (pictured above in all its glory), Simon, the proprietor himself comes out and tosses pancakes at your plate for you to catch them.

After the first round of pancakes went out to everyone we dug in, it was fantastic, crisp skin, kind of fatty, juicy meat, all wrapped in a delicate pancake finished with hoisin, cucumber and spring onion.

After a countless number of pancakes the noodles arrived. I wasn’t too sure what to expect but they came out and were delicious, the sauce, the crunch, the duck, it was all so good and almost on par with the peking duck itself.

Lastly the bone soup, it was light, refreshing and extremely palette cleansing. I didn’t take a picture because, I mean, how attractive can soup really be.

Simons Peking is somewhere for special occasions and if I had my way, a monthly Sunday dinner. It’s just a delicious meal in a friendly and fun atmosphere (BYO is a bonus).

Simon's Peking Duck Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sonny’s Fried Chicken – Carlton, Vic, AU

Sonny’s Fried Chicken
Carlton, Victoria, AU

(Curtin is Super dimly lit – apologies on the picture quality) 

I have been craving some good fried chicken since my departure from Canada about a month ago; I’ve been missing that Bar Fancy feeling. After some googling I found a place that did pressure fried chicken that was brined 24 hours and considered “southern” style.
Housed in the ever so hipster John Curtin Hotel; it was advertised by a red neon sign reading fried chicken; essentially the only illumination in the dining room.

I enlisted the help of a few friends to ensure I got to do my usual “basically order the menu” routine and after a bit of deliberation they looked at me and simply said just order and we’ll transfer you the money later.

Blind foolish trust; the downfall of many men.

Walking up to the bar I got the attention of a server and said to him “I’m going to order a shit ton of food”, he looked at me and said “it better be or I’m going to be disappointed”; to which I proceeded to order; in an extremely nonchalant fashion:

– 12 pieces of chicken
– Deep fried pickles
– Loaded Fries
– Baked beans
– Mash and gravy
– Mac and cheese
– Lentil and radish salad
– Coleslaw
– Potato Salad
– Ranch sauce,
– Comeback sauce
– Gravy, and finally, a double cheeseburger.

The chicken and sides all came out together in glorious fashion.

I took my pictures quickly and got ready for a bite of that extremely crunchy and enticing chicken. First bite in and I got no chicken, the next bite got chicken but no breading. I was starting to worry.

The chicken was juicy, the 24hr brine really shining through while the breading was super crisp and had great flavour. That’s where the positives stop for the chicken; the breading fell away from the chicken and the skin was like a boiled mess. It was a disappointment after it showed so much promise.

The sides, bar the mac and cheese were all freaking amazing. The slaw was fresh and crunchy, beans sweet, savoury and altogether great. The lentils gave an air of relief from the onslaught of rich food and was great to break up the first round of sides from the second round of loaded fries (fries covered in cheese, bacon and gravy) and their deep fried pickles; which with the ranch sauce were probably the best things I ate.

Lastly the burger, two patties, cheese, pickles, lettuce, tomato and the comeback sauce all on a toasted bun. I saw a few come out of the kitchen looking overcooked and dry however this one came out and was great. Juicy patties with crisp toppings, gooey cheese and a perfectly toasted bun, cheap, worthwhile and tasty.

Overall, the reason I went to Sonny’s was the chicken and in that regard, it was not worth it; however, if you’re grabbing a drink and are feeling peckish I would definitely say the burger or some deep fried pickles are definitely worth snacking on.

Sonny's Fried Chicken & Burgers Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato