355 Crown St
Surry Hills, NSW, 2010
(02) 9332 3300
Web: Billy Kwong
Mon ~ Thu, 6pm ~ 10pm
Fri ~ Sat, 6pm ~ 11pm
Sun, 6pm ~ 9pm
What We Ordered:
Freshly Shucked Oysters Steamed with Ginger & Shallots $15
Steamed Prawn Wontons with Organic Brown Rice Vinegar Dressing $19
Crispy Skin Pork Belly with Steam Pancakes
Crispy Skin Duck with Organic Mandarin Sauce $47
Fresh Tropical Fruits and Dark Chocolate $15
There are so many restaurants and bars located on Crown Street, Surry Hills in Sydney. This is probably one of the best places to eat and Billy Kwong is one that you don't want to miss. I first saw Kylie on her cooking show on TV years ago and I love the idea she opens this small, cozy restaurant with lovely home style cooking. No booking was needed, so be there early to avoid disappointment. I would hated if there's no reservation service available if the restaurant was in Melbourne, but in my case, due to the policy we were lucky to get a table on a Saturday night, even we have to wait half an hour before they cleaned up a table for us. That's totally fine, as we left our name and contact no. with friendly hostess and walked down the road to have a drink in one of the pubs.
At 9:30pm the restaurant was still packed will people. I was so excited we got a table which could look straight into the kitchen. This is not a fine dining place where you can sit there, drink wine and relax. The restaurant was a little noisy and the tables were close to each other. You sit on wooden stools instead of chairs with cushions. You could probably overheard what was going on from tables next to you and check out what were they having in their dishes. It was fun and interestingly, I kind of like all these atmosphere, as the tiny little place seemed so lively. It was like you were having a large family gathering during the Chinese New Year where talent chefs were your aunts working in the kitchen, preparing food and chopping roast meat; waiters walking around the tables were like your uncles serving food to tables where relatives came from all over the country; people sitting next to you were like your cousins who were chatted non stop about the exciting holiday season. It was a true enjoyable moment for me and the experience was so different and unforgettable.
The food was outstanding and all served in reasonable portion. The service was great. Our first dish was the freshly shucked oysters steamed with ginger and shallots. We appreciated with the top quality and freshness of the oysters and the sauce was simple and light. I prefer this over the oyster dish I had earlier of the day from Tetsuya's. The steamed prawn wontons with organic brown rice vinegar dressing was delicious. The dressing had some sweetness in it instead of very spicy from most of the Szechuan cuisine. This may more suitable for ordinary patron. Again the sauce was light which did not take over the beautiful flavour from the food itself.
After we had the two entrees, we couldn't wait for the main courses to amazed us and we were totally blow away from the crispy skin pork belly with steam pancakes. Normally I am not a big fan of pork belly and I never order it from Chinese or western restaurants. Since the waiter recommend the dish and promised it was going to be surprisingly good, we decided to give it a try. And the result was divine!!! Pretty much speechless. OMG! I just had the best piece of pork belly in my life in Billy Kwong. Unbelievable! The pork skin was crunch and the meat was juicy. The pancake was thin and still warm during serving. It was a 10/10 perfect dish. However, the journey kept amazing us with the crispy skin duck with organic Mandarin sauce. The duck was beautifully cooked and the sauce was incredible tasty. I could drink the sauce if there was any left in our dish. The flavour was rich and strong. The twice cooked duck was balance off well with the organic sweet and sour plums. I was so blessed. Really, I felt that way at that moment. Nothing beats good food.
This is a place I'd highly recommend. It's not like one of those cheap Chinese eating out but definitely worth the money. Hubby said it was the best Chinese dinning he had for a while and it was not cooking by Chinese. Haha... Will be back for sure!
Signed copies of Kylie Kwong's new book, 'It Tastes Better' ($69.95) are available in the restaurant. Or try her recipes Salad of King Prawns, Avocado & Watercress and Potato, Carrot & Black Cloud-Ear Fungus Salad with Ginger Vinaigrette online from her new book.
I love Chinese food and adore Billy Kwong, who don't if you like to try something not so traditional Chinese. Yum!
*Rating: Excellent, Good, Average, Poor, Very Poor