I have to say, Asian inspired dining places are becoming a dime a dozen but mostly they’re a mish mash of dishes and flavours that don’t always work together. So what to expect when you find yourself at uniquely located restaurant that promises you an Asian inspired menu? Skepticism that was ultimately abated with a series of well crafted Asian inspired dishes, ones with a more traditional slant and ones with a bit of a twist.
Jamu Dining is located in Richmond, just a block back from busy Bridge road on the ground floor of an architecturally savvy apartment block. You may not necessarily see it or walk past it but given it’s only one block back it’s not far from the usual haunts that you might visit on Bridge road. Owned by Hawthorn AFL players, James Frawley & Isaac Smith along with Evelyn Lau, A Thousand Blessings renowned owner, JAMU is about the culmination cultures founded on the fusion of Malaysian and Australian cuisine.
With a menu designed to share there are a multitude of delicious dishes to choose. Highlights of the snack and starter dishes included the Kingfish Ceviche with tamarind and smoked pineapple, a delightfully light starter dish to whet the appetite. The Glazed Chicken Wings were basted in a mix of Siracha, honey, sesame and shiso to give a fiery yet sweet kick to proceedings, and the Cheeseburger Spring Rolls were a delicious nod to the mix of Australian and Asian tastes.
My favourite larger size dish was definitely the Pork Hock, roasted to perfection with the right amount of crackle in the skin and slathered in the most delicious tamarind caramel sauce. It was sweet, tangy and so moorish that when I go back, I’m just ordering that and not sharing!
The other larger size dish that I loved was the Half Chook with honey, cumin & coriander seeds that was cooked well and not dry with a beautiful ginger and spring onion sauce. We had it with a side of fried rice which was the perfect complement to the flavours of the larger size dishes.
The restaurant feels spacious and modernly decked out with a view into the kitchen so you can see where the magic happens.
Pop Jamu Dining on your list of great Melbourne eating destinations. You won’t be sorry that you did.
Jamu Dining, 1 Palmer Street, Richmond 3121
Images by Simon Shiff