One of my beautiful friends at work had her birthday on the weekend. She decided to celebrate her birthday with a lunch at Gingerboy. I have heard really great things about Gingerboy so I was excited that she picked this place.
She was so excited that she printed the menu at work and circled what she wanted. This was great when we got there because we pretty much ordered straight away.
I loved the decor of Gingerboy. One wall was made of what seemed to be rows and rows of bamboo. The colours were bright and it was a nice place to sit it and actually enjoy the atmosphere. What I also liked was that the tables were not squashed in like other places such as Chin Chin.
Like many similar restaurants, Gingerboy embraces a sharing/grazing theme. It allows for everyone to try a number of dishes. This is great for a group of over 4 people (we were a group of 5) but a group smaller than this does struggle as the meal can end up getting quite expensive. We decided to order 5 snacks/street hawker food and a couple of mains to share. I think for the five of us, we picked the right number of dishes. We all left full but not feeling sick. The waitress was really helpful and said with the snacks we could order in lots of five pieces instead of the standard three to suit the group. We did this for most of the snacks except for one when we knew someone at the table would not want. All prices I have listed are based on the standard menu.
Son in Law Eggs, Chilli Jam & Asian Herbs (3 Pcs) - $13.50
I have had Son in Law Eggs at Chin Chin and I fell in love with them. I love how the outside of the egg is crunchy but the yolk inside is nice and gooey. Unlike Chin Chin, Gingerboy's eggs come whole. You are meant to eat them whole so that you get the runny yolk straight in your mouth. However, as we only ordered three eggs, we cut them in half. I can understand why the egg should be eaten whole though. These eggs were perfection. I would have loved to have a couple of more. I have to say Gingerboy's eggs were better than Chin Chin's (although the Chin Chin ones are still very good).
Grilled Lamb in La Lot Leaves with Sour Chilli Vinegar (3 pcs) - $15.00
Based on most of my other experiences at other Asian restaurants, Lamb is not usually popular. I was not sure what to expect of these as in sounded almost Greek to me (Lamb??? Leaves???), however I was really glad that we chose these because they were wonderful. The lamb (and sauce) was spicy but it worked so well with the lamb. These also contained water chestnuts. I am not a fan of nuts but I actually liked them with the lamb. A winner of a dish.
Steamed Char Sui Pork Buns, Pickled Cucumber, Chilli Sauce (3 Pcs) - $16.50
I loved how these looked like little tacos. Each taco contained so much pork. I loved that. When I usually get a pork bun, I always find that there is too much dough and not much pork. I loved how this was a think taco and lots of pork. This was a really nice dish and a good balance as the previous two dishes had been a bit spicy.
Salt & Pepper Chicken Spare Ribs, Tamarind Hot Sauce - $15.00
This was something I picked last minute because I love chicken spare ribs. I am so glad I picked these because this was one of the highlights of the meal. The sauce was spicy and there was lots of sauce so you were able to re-dip the chicken in the sauce (double dipping!!). The skin on the chicken was quite crispy. There is nothing I could fault with this dish.
Steamed Wagyu Beef & Bamboo Dumpling with Cashew Soy (3 Pcs) - $15.00
I didn't actually try one of these. Another girl at my table didn't want to try the spare ribs so I offered her my dumpling for her rib (the swap worked out for both of us!) Everyone at the table described them as being different but seemed to be in a good way. I have to admit, this is not something I would have picked from the menu but everyone on the table seemed satisfied with them.
Slow Roasted Pork Belly, Green Prawn & Tomato Relish, Fennel & Citrus Salad - $38.00
The prices for mains are a bit steep but the quality was amazing. This slow roasted pork belly tasted so fresh and clean. It did not have that greasy feeling that you would normally associate with Pork Belly. I found that the crunchy crackle and the sauce of green prawn & tomato relish worked really well with the pork belly. However, by the time this dish goes around the table there is not much to split between five people. I think the serving sizes could be slightly bigger but the quality is impeccable so this is only a minor complaint.
Bang Bang Chicken, Rice Noodle Salad, Chilli Four Ways - $36.50
The idea of the Bang Bang Chicken is that you mix the chilli in your individual serve to suit your taste. There were four types of chilli to choose from and make the ideal combination -
I used a combination of the two chilli sauces and the chilli flakes. I didn't use any fresh Thai chillies as I think this might have pushed me over the edge.
The Bang Bang Chicken Salad had a fresh taste to it and I loved how you could determine the spice based on what level suited you. This allowed everyone at the table from the people that think Lemon & Herb is spicy to people like me who love spicy food to all enjoy this one dish. Whilst I did love the dish, similar to my point with the pork, I felt the portion was quite small for the price. I would have liked to see a little bit more chicken in the dish.
Steamed rice is also served with the mains and our table of five only received a small bowl about the size of my fist. Whilst I don't think we needed steamed rice, with something like this I would not have expected Gingerboy to be stingy with the serving size.
Overall, I LOVED the food at Gingerboy but the the mains are slightly overpriced based on their size. However the quality of the food is amazing and cannot be faulted. I am pretty sure I will be returning to Gingerboy but I am going to keep this as a special occasion restaurant because of the prices. I think something along the likes of Chin Chin is a bit more affordable and serves a similar level and style of food. Between five of us we spent $38 each + tip, which is not too bad, but in a smaller group of people, we could have easily spent over $50 in order to be able to try a few different dishes.
I like the fact that you can book a table at Gingerboy because I am someone who does not like waiting in lines (I won't do it) so at least this is a place you can actually plan a night out for and know when you will be able to eat dinner!
27 - 29 Crossley Street,