Sunday, 24 February 2013

Colourful Yunnan [carlton]

For all the food blogging I did while I was in Beijing, there are a few places I visited regularly that I never got around to blogging, for a variety of reasons. One of those places was a little Yunnanese restaurant close to where some of my friends lived, at which we quickly became regulars, often ordering the same dishes over and over again. It was my first real experience with Yunnanese food, and when I left China it was one I was worried I'd struggle to continue, given the lack of Yunnanese food in Melbourne. 

The only restaurant that Google spits out, other than the Neil-Perry Spice Temple, is Colourful Yunnan, on the corner of Grattan and Swanston in Carlton. So it was to here that me and my China adventure compatriots ventured on Friday night. 

There are so many amazing things on the menu here (take your meat eating friends). 

Wendy and I carefully selected some noodles, a delicious cabbage dish, and my long-time favourite, 土豆丝 (shredded potato). 

Yunnan food is spicy. Not as spicy as Sichuanese food, but it's getting up there, with lots of chilli all over the place. So I tried to order a mix of dishes, including some that would be less spicy for our less spicy friends, which means that we missed out on some of our favourites (cold black fungus - so good, but if anything the fact that it is chilled makes it more spicy. I know it sounds odd but trust me, if you like mushrooms and spicy food, order this. Or wait for my next review). 

土豆丝 was fine. Nothing super special, a little too heavy on the chilli and the oil, but pleasant enough. 

Chinese cabbage I love at any time, and I especially love it sour and spicy (算拉白菜). So good, and this one was great, I haven't had it in a while and it was a delight to eat. 

oooh noodles

These noodles! Wendy cleverly took a photo of the menu because the name was long, but foolishly I thought I'd remember it. I was wrong, and I will update this post when I am able with the name. However what I was not wrong about was the deliciousness. We had to order this vego specific, I think, and it comes with chilli, carrot, peanuts, mustard greens, beanshoots, hand pulled noodles and tofu, and you mix it all together and it's great. 

Service was prompt, even when we ordered more dishes halfway through the meal. This entire meal cost me $12. So cheap, so good, so happy. Will return, even if just for the noodles, which would make a meal for me and maybe even some takeaway.

Colourful Yunnan
680 Swanston Street

This blog post suggests there is also a Flinders Lane location

Get there on any tram that goes to Uni Melb. Totally inaccessible to wheelchairs. Very brightly lit, can order and pay at table. Outdoor seating. Menu is in English and Chinese characters, but is very word heavy and a little confusing. Cash only.


Hayley said...

Oh yay, I've been curious about this place ever since it opened (mainly because it always looks chock-a-block), yet wasn't sure about it's vegie credentials. I'll have to pop on by now it's been given the all-clear!

steph said...

Hayley it's good! And I was delighted to discover it has an upstairs for extra space.

Anonymous said...

The dish is Rice noodles with Tofu Pudding (豆花米线).