Empress is a new Chinese restaurant that is located on Greenhill Road opposite the Burnside Village Shopping Centre. At the same location that was once Eastern Garden Chinese Restaurant, Empress specialises in share plates and yum cha. The new fit out certainly looks better than what was here previously with a new takeaway section at the rear and modern furnishings in the restaurant. We were here for Father’s Day lunch with yum cha dishes on the menu.
The Savoury Sticky Rice Dumplings were fried to a golden brown. The exterior was crispy and chewy, and the mince filling was well seasoned.
The Golden Taro Puffs were also fried to a golden brown. The exterior was crunchy while the taro was more soft and delicate underneath. The mince filling was mixed in with the taro, and the dish was well executed.
The Prawn and Chives Dumplings had a soft and firm translucent skin. The prawns were juicy and succulent, and the chives gave the dumplings nice depth.
The Prawn and Spinach Dumplings were very similar to the previous dish with the exception of the shape and the vegetable. Again, the translucent skin was delicate and firm, and the filling was well seasoned.
The Baked BBQ Pork Pastry is one of our favourites. The pastry skin was baked to a nice golden brown and was flaky. The BBQ pork filling had lean bits of pork and was subtly sweet.
The Fried Seafood Stuffed Tofu is a balance between healthy and unhealthy. A morsel of seafood sits on top of tofu and is fried to a golden brown. It’s then smothered in a delicious sauce which gives the dish more depth.
The Dragon Beard Prawns is essentially Kataifi Prawns, a dish you’d find at a Greek restaurant. The sauce that went with it was more Asian inspired with the inclusion of wasabi. The shredded kataifi pastry was nice and crunchy, and the inside revealed a well cooked and juicy prawn. The wasabi sauce wasn’t overpowering and added depth to the dish.
The dessert for the day was the Steamed Salted Egg Custard Buns. The steamed buns could have been a little fluffier and we felt there was a lot more of it than the filling. The filling was a combination of salted egg and egg custard, and the contrast of sweet and salty really made this dish work.
Empress is certainly based in a popular location with a full house of people gathering for yum cha on a Saturday morning. The dishes we had were well executed, and we were surprised that the cost of the bill was $55 for three people. The staff were friendly and helpful, and the atmosphere was relaxed.
Compared to other yum cha places in Adelaide, Empress is one of the better ones.
WHERE: 351 Greenhill Rd, Toorak Gardens