Fu Manchu 2.0 – a Chevron Island icon returns with a new look, menu and vibe – The Weekend Edition

October 21, 2019

A few weeks ago, we broke the news to you that Chevron Island dining space Fu Manchu Oriental Kitchen (which first opened in mid-2016) had closed its doors – but assured you it was only temporary. While the popular dining spot had shifted ownership over the years, circumstances saw it fall back into the hands of its original co-owner Zuraya Hamilton, who has returned to the Thomas Drive precinct to take the modern-Asian venue into a new phase. After closing for four weeks to allow for a complete re-fit of the space, Fu Manchu 2.0 is finally here.

The details

While the name remains, the new incarnation of Fu Manchu takes on a totally different identity, fit-out and vibe, as well as a new chef, food menu and bar offering. The restaurant now only spans one level instead of two – but there are big plans for upstairs, with Zuraya and the team to open British Colonial-style bar and eatery The Ipoh Club in the space by December. Heading the kitchen for Fu Manchu and the soon-to-open The Ipoh Club is renowned local chef Julie Rogers, who formerly owned SoPo Dining Room and cafe 42Fifteen in Southport, and was most recently at Mr PP’s Rooftop. Julie’s innovative menu retains Fu Manchu’s Asian lean, while pushing it more specifically toward a modern, East-Asian style.

The food

In a step away from its predecessor, Fu Manchu 2.0’s menu is designed to be more attainable for regular diners, rather than being a ‘special occasion’ venue. So, whether you’re the type to sit at the bar with a beer and dumplings, or prefer a cocktail-driven dinner feast with friends, a long lazy lunch, an intimate mid-week date night, or a quick dinner with the kids while the sun’s still up – there’s a snack, feast or sip to suit. The menu starts with bites like fried whitebait with yuzu mayonnaise, and housemade crumpets with pork pate, golden-fig jam and duck skin. The smaller plates cover the land and sea, with highlights like hiramasa kingfish ceviche with yuzu and sour plum, jalapeno and finger lime, as well as truffle-topped Shanghai soup dumplings, and lager-battered Moreton Bay bug rolls with pear and kholrabi slaw. As for the larger shareables, there’s moreish plates like Korean fried-chicken ribs, popcorn shellfish (bugs and local king prawns) with bush honey and lemon-myrtle caramel, tender miso-glazed lamb ribs, and grass-fed porterhouse with nahm jim and toasted rice. Leave room for dessert – there’s kaffir-lime doughnuts with pandan-lime curd, deep-fried ice-cream with bush honey and matcha custard, and eye-popping sticky rice with fresh mango and wattleseed brittle. The kids are also well looked after with a standalone menu of bites.

Bar and late-night dining

Behind the bar, there’s a fun series of libations that put a vibrant, Asian-style spin on classic cocktails, as well as wines (including organic and vegan drops) and sake. The beer taps are pouring craft brews by New Zealand’s Deep Creek Brewing Co, alongside Fu Manchu’s own house brews. Oh, and those that like to sip and snack late at night will be pleased to know that the kitchen is serving until 11:00 pm, with a late-night supper menu kicking off at 9:00 pm – think curry puffs with labneh, taro crisps, and flaky roti with massaman curry sauce.

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