Lee Ho Fook Chinese Restaurant on Smith Street Collingwood

Chinese fusion would normally not impress my parents at all (especially my dad) and yet they found themselves enjoying their meal at Lee Ho Fook in Collingwood.  The Chinese food here is done well with fresh ingredients and a frequently changing menu.  I’m quite glad they keep crowd favourites on there though.

So again because I’ve been so slow in posting, I have made two visits to Lee Ho Fook that I will combine now.

So in terms of appetisers I’ve tried:

The triple cooked duck wraps were a play off on peking duck.  Instead of hoisin sauce, it was served with orange sauce.  Surprisingly, the sauce wasn’t sickly sweet as expected but rather bitter and fragrant instead and served with a crunchy combination of grains to add texture to the wraps.

The crispy eggplant is a favourite that I’d like to try again! Deep fried crispy morsels coated with spring onions and chili.

The milk bun with braised pork belly is hard to not order – the milk bun adds richness and replaces the usual steamed version.  They serve a very generous slice of pork belly as you can see.

In terms of medium sized dishes, their beef shin and ox tongue was a dish that used very traditional combinations.  Hence, I actually can’t remember it particularly well – I do remember the thin slices being extremely tender though.

We had the king mushrooms and radish which I believe the kitchen wisely serves rather early on as the flavours are mild yet refreshing.  They use dried scallops to develop some of the sweetness of the sauce and create differences in texture with egg white, slices of cabbage, radish and mushrooms.  The flavours would be easily overpowered if served with a heavier dish.

For the larger dishes, my dad will vouch for their fried rice (and everyone should be happy with the price of $10).  It really is nice to see there is such lovely fried rice in Melbourne.  Kudos to the chef.

Well, there was one dish I would have ordered again but they didn’t have – probably because of seasonality of the products in it – the mushrooms and jerusalem artichokes.  Beautiful flavour combinations and again very popular at the table.

The stir fried squid, white asparagus and prawn butter was very different once again, with a refreshing tang to the sauce.  Whilst not quite like anything I’ve ever eaten at a Chinese restaurant before, it was lovely.

Who doesn’t like ordering sizzling dishes at Chinese restaurants (possibly those with fancy clothes on).  Well, Lee Ho Fook offers sizzling wagyu beef.  Tender and served in the same dramatic fashion as any other restaurant but the end result is so much nicer.

We were lucky enough to have Moreton Bay Bugs on the menu – please note the sauce is quite hot so don’t try to chew on the chili sauce tidbits like I did.

Now don’t forget to save room for dessert here.  They are so reasonably priced at $6-10 (actually they increased their prices just recently).

The first time, we tried all they had on the menu.  The warm chocolate and cocoa nib brownie was rich but not overly so.

The fig leaf ice cream was refreshing and served with candied walnuts and sliced fruit of some sort – I couldn’t quite figure out what.

The lychee sorbet isn’t quite what you expect, being served in a glass almost mimicking a drink.  Refreshing none the less. I think it has been replaced by a guava sorbet now.

The custard is what won my parents over (that and the fried rice).  They both enjoyed the strong flavour of jasmine tea which was the highlight of this dish.

So, both times I’ve tried Lee Ho Fook, I’ve left feeling quite happy that I’ve dined there.  I hope they don’t increase their prices too much given in the space of two months it seems like everything is slightly more expensive.  It’s still very much worth it however.

Lee Ho Fook

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Lee Ho Fook -37.805646, 144.983437

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