Box Hill, 3128
Box Hill is not for the indecisive. Every time I eat here I seem to spend more time picking out where I want to eat, as opposed to actual eating. I think half the problem is that all of the places I’ve been to in Box Hill is delicious, and as a result, I’m torn between going to an old favourite, and trying something new. And I’d probably still be there trying to decide if it weren’t for Chris putting his foot down, and deciding that we’ll be eating at Hills BBQ Noodle Shop that night.
But of course, then there’s the question of deciding WHAT to eat. Most Chinese restaurants are known for having ridiculously long menus, and Hills BBQ is no exception. After an indecent amount of time spent deliberating, we decided on what Hills BBQ (probably) does best – BBQ.
|Honey Glazed BBQ Pork ($5.50 for a small serve)|
We started off with a small serve of Honey Glazed BBQ Pork ($5.50) to share. The serving size was very generous, especially for the price that we paid, and unsurprisingly, it was also of good quality. It was sweet and smoky with crispy charred edges, and it was fairly tender as well as being nice and lean. It was drizzled in a sweet sauce that tasted of five-spice, but unfortunately you couldn’t taste the five-spice on the meat. That tiny gripe aside, it was a pretty darn good BBQ pork.
|Roast Duck on Rice ($8.50)|
We also ordered the Roast Duck with Rice ($8.50). For that price, I really wasn’t expecting much, maybe just a couple of pieces of duck off-cuts thrown onto some rice. So you can imagine how surprised we were when the dish above came out. There was about a quarter duck sitting on a bed of fluffy white rice, its skin glistening with oil, chopped up into big, eat-able pieces; they even gave us a whole duck leg! It also came with a couple of pieces of the obligatory bok choy on the side. We spent a little while debating whether or not the health benefits of bok choy was worth the risk of choking on it (it’s not). As for the taste of the duck, I thought it was certainly above par. Not the best duck I’ve ever had, the skin could’ve been crispier and the whole thing could’ve tasted more... duck-y? But the serve was generous, the meat was tender, and not to mention, it’s against the laws of the universe for duck not to taste good – I’d definitely order this again.
The service here is friendly and enthusiastic, especially for an Asian restaurant, and whilst the decor is a little shabby, the colourful strips of paper on the walls proclaiming the specials, as well as the large fish tanks near the entrance makes the whole experience that much more authentic. I’ve been here a couple of times in the past, and there has never been a single disappointing dish. The claypot dishes deserve a special mention, but everything else on the menu is also worth a try. They also offer traditional BBQ and marinated dishes, such as pig’s ear, tripe, and offal (and heaps more) for takeaway in pre-packed containers if you don’t feel like a full meal. I know where I’ll be heading when the next BBQ craving hits.
Rating: 14/20 – cheapest duck in town