Traditional Chinese cuisine has become a lot more exciting with the opening of China Republic at Sydney’s World Square Shopping Centre.
China Republic, Sydney
Stepp past the four metre terracotta warrior at the entrance and into the 1200 square metre dining room, you’ll quickly forget that you’re in a shopping mall. The lavish $8 million dollar venue is resplendent in fine taste, a design by the talented team at DS17.
Red Table at the Rear
Dim lighting, elaborate dark furnishing, parasols on the ceiling and traditional Chinese furniture give more than a nod to the Oriental design of the sleek and modern restaurant.
Peking Duck Ovens with Chefs Carving Duck
A living goldfish pond surrounds two elevated kitchens offering diners a view of the experienced kitchen staff. One kitchen has been built exclusively for Peking duck and can roast over 20 ducks an hour.
On the second level, a bamboo scale model of the Forbidden City imperial palace greets diners. Three terracotta warriors cast a watchful eye on an expansive dining space surrounded by four elegant private rooms.
Private Dining Room
Each room has an original design, furniture and colour scheme, seating between eight and sixteen guests,
The Imperial Private Dining Room
with an imperial private room catering for eight persons.
An extensive wine list complements the food with premium local and international wines, cocktails, a list of spirits, beers and Asian teas. Start with the Concubine Yang made with Pampero Blanco rum, fresh pineapple juice and lychees. It’s slightly sweet but works well as an aperitif style to the cuisine that follows.
The menu at China Republic is presented as a large, hard cover book, elegant in design, showcasing each dish artistically on the page.
Chef Yu Declaring China Republic Open
A section is devoted to the Top 10 Menu with recommended dishes originating from China’s centuries-old heritage. The rest follows with an expansive offering of cold and hot entrees, soups, main courses which include live seafood and well presented desserts.
Beijing Style Spicy and Sour Cucumber
A thirteen course dinner begins with a series fishes, each traversing various regions of China such as Beijing, Guangdong, Yunnan, Shandong and Sichuan. Cold dishes begin with a tasty appetiser of Beijing Style Spicy and Sour Cucumber ($8) and
Eggplant and Coriander Salad with Garlic Dressing
the delectable Eggplant and Coriander Salad with Garlic Dressing ($12), strong on the garlic with touch of heat on the palate.
White Cut Chicken Served with Spicy Lemon Sauce
A Guangdong specialty, the White Cut Chicken Served with Spicy Lemon Sauce ($15) packs a lot of bold flavours from the sauce and has a lovely kick of ginger.
Beijing Style Tofu with Shallots and Fish Roe
The Beijing Style Tofu with Shallots and Fish Roe ($9) has the most unusual texture for a tofu dish. Resembling ricotta cheese, it’s light and seasoned, with the fish roe elevating the flavour of the tofu.
Chef Yu Preparing Soup and Hot Pot
Beijing trained Executive Chef and Co-Owner Mei Sheng Yu prepares a special soup dish from Yunnan served in two parts.
Chicken Broth with Seasonal Mushrooms (individual serving size shown here)
The first is a chicken and mushroom broth with six types of mushrooms.
China Republic Special Coral Trout Hotpot with Mushroom Broth
The other is China Republic Special Coral Trout Hotpot with Mushroom Broth (market price). The hotpot is served with a range of condiments including homemade chilli oil, bakes sesame, coriander, shallot, pickled mustard and a delicious hot Sichuan chilli that is not for the faint-hearted.
Traditional Tea Pot Wall
Next is the national dish of China, and one that features on the Top 10 Menu.
Chef Carving Peking Duck, Individual Condiments
Peking Duck ($88) brings theatrics to the dining table. The bird is flamed then carved artistically and served on a special duck dish with a side of condiments ($2 per person) made up of white sugar, garlic paste, shallots, cucumber, sweet bean paste (ho sin sauce), pickled cucumber, chopped red onion and Chinese mustard.
Peking Duck Presentation
A restaurant is serious about its Peking Duck when it presents patrons with a brochure detailing six steps on how to eat it. The crispy skin can be dipped into white sugar, a combination of fat and sweetness that go well together. The duck can also be dipped in a garlic paste or eaten in a flat pancake with shallot, cucumber and sweet bean paste. Another way is to add duck, cucumber and Chinese mustard to the pancake. A more novel way is to use the thicker pocket pancakes and fill them with duck, purple onion, cucumber and sweet bean paste. Of course, there’s the final option of creating your own.
Sauteed Banana Prawns
A series of hot dishes follow, starting with the sweet and juicy Sauteed Banana Prawns ($39). The prawns and cleaned and deveined but the shell and head remain attached which impart a lot more flavour to the meat.
Kung Pao Chicken with Peanuts
The Kung Pao Chicken with Peanuts ($19) is another dish from the Top 10 Menu, spicy and hot from the chilli, one that invites a cold icy beer.
Chef Special Sweet and Sour Pork Spareribs
The Chef Special Sweet and Sour Pork Spareribs ($21) are small morsels of ribs, sweet and tender, melting in the mouth with a sweet flavour.
Stir Fried Broccoli with Garlic
Stir Fried Broccoli with Garlic ($16) are a welcome addition after the spicy hot dishes. The vegetables are crisp with a pronounced garlic flavour.
Sichuan Style Dumplings
The final savoury course consists of Sichuan Style Dumplings ($6, 3 per serve) with a silky smooth pocket served in a tasty hot sauce.
Assorted Dessert Plate
The Assorted Dessert Plate ($21.50 for 4-6 people, or $28.50 for 6-8 people) is an artful presentation of individual sweets meant for sharing.
L-R: Glutinous Rice Ball Stuffed with Mashed Fruit, Sweet Porridge
Alternatively, the Sweet Porridge ($5.90) and the Glutinous Rice Ball Stuffed with Mashed Fruit ($5.90) are a wise choice for a lighter option.
Whether it’s in the classic elegance of the interior, the artful presentation of the dishes or the interpretation of classic flavours, China Republic seamlessly fuses the old with new. Every dish makes a lasting impression and invites subsequent visits to try more of the expansive menu. Service is attentive and polite, and the vibe is that of sophisticated dining making it a suitable choice to impress someone, to celebrate a special occasion or simply have a great night out.
Shop 10.41 World Square Shopping Centre
Upper level, 680 George Street, Sydney
(Corner George and Goulburn Streets)
Open for lunch and dinner seven days a week
Bookings: + 61 2 8081 0888
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