Our Favourite Asian restaurants in Melbourne

If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you will know how much we love food! Melbourne has such a great choice of restaurants with different cuisines and price ranges – there’s something for everyone’s palate and budget.

We’ve already written a tasty blog post on our best burger restaurants in Melbourne and here’s our second foodie post about our favourite Asian restaurants. There’s some great Asian restaurants around Chinatown (obviously) that pack their food with delicious flavours and spices. If you’re in search of some authentically Asian dishes in Melbourne, Chinatown is the place to go - The Vietnamese Pho from Pho on Flinders takes us straight back to Vietnam. In no particular order, here’s a list of 5 of our favourite Asian restaurants in Melbourne.

1.      Oppa

This is by far one of our favourite restaurants. The food is so good and it is so cheap! It’s a Korean restaurant so offers some amazing and authentically Korean dishes like; hot stone Bibimbap, mild Korean curry, Dosirak and Tong Dak (Korean fried chicken). Each dish is so full of traditional Korean flavours and you can walk away without spending more that $13 on a main meal. The decor is great too. Lovely pale blue and cream tiles, wooden seating and exposed light bulbs. Don’t forget to take cash with you when you go though as they don’t accept card or split bills. It’s hard to pick our favourite dishes from Oppa, but if we had to, Natalie’s would be the Katsu curry and Jordan’s would be the original flavoured Korean fried chicken.

2.      Mama’s Buoi

Mama’s Buoi offers Vietnamese home cooking. The restaurant is located down a small laneway next to H&M and Myer off of Bourke street in Melbourne CBD. It’s about a 2 minute walk from our flat so the location is ideal for us! We’ve only been there once (it was to celebrate been away from home for 1 year) but the food was really authentic and so tasty. Natalie had the Saigon influenced duck curry and Jordan had the traditional Viet style pork short ribs with morning glory on the side. Both incredibly delicious and full of flavour. The duck curry was one of the best Natalie has ever tasted. The menu offers a huge variety of popular dishes such as Vietnamese grills, stir fries, fried spring rolls, fresh paper rolls, pulled duck pancakes and seafood dishes. Of course not forgetting the Pho as well! This is more of a dinner restaurant whereas Oppa can be for lunch or dinner as it’s so relaxed. Mama’s Buoi is actually outside in the alleyway, with some areas undercover and outside heaters to prevent you from getting cold in the winter. Definitely one to try.

3.      Lanka Pot

Unfortunately we found it hard to find a website or anything to link you guys to for Lanka Pot. (We’re pretty sure that’s the correct name!) There is a Lanka Pot stall in Victoria Summer and Winter Night Markets which serves some delicious Sri Lankan food. There’s not a lot we can tell you about the menu as we believe it changes all the time but we know they do some yummy veggie curries, tandoori chicken, chicken and goat curries and saffron rice. All the dishes are cooked on the spot so you know it’s fresh and the smell coming from their stall is enough to make you wander over for a look. It’s a little pricey, as most places in the Victoria Night Markets are, but it’s lovely comfort food to have on a chilly Winter’s night in Melbourne.   

4.      Pho Flinders

Walking in to Pho Flinders takes us straight back to Vietnam, where the restaurants are basic in decor and plastic seating is the norm. And if the decor doesn’t take you back, the food definitely will. The Pho is one of the best we’ve tasted outside of Asia and is definitely worth a visit if you’re ever in Melbourne CBD. There’s nothing better than a hot bowl of rare beef Pho and and warm cup of cinnamon tea to wash it down. The other dishes are good too - Natalie has tried the stir fry rice noodles with chicken a few times. But if you visit this restaurant, you have to try the Pho. The food comes out super quick and again the prices are so cheap - only $11 for a large bowl of Pho! What’s stopping you?

5.      Shanghai Dumpling House

We would recommend going to Shanghai Dumpling House in Tattersalls Lane, Chinatown, if you’re after a quick and tasty bite to eat. The dumplings come out so quickly you could be done within 20 minutes! We wouldn’t say this was the best place to go if you wanted a nice, formal sit down dinner - for that we would recommend Mama’s Buoi. But if you’re up for something really casual, a bit hectic, ridiculously cheap and somewhere where you can bring your own alcohol then this is the place for you. The dumpling menu includes different kinds of meat and veggie options, with one option more sweet than savoury - the sweet pumpkin dumplings are an acquired taste to say the least, but we know people who love them! The restaurant also offers noodle dishes, soups and rice cakes although we can’t comment on these. It’s easy to over order in a place like this as everything is so cheap and the dumplings come in portions of 6, 8 or 10 pieces. Probably best to go with a big group so you can order one of everything on the menu and get stuck in!