Hills BBQ Noodle Shop

October 05, 2019 Ivan Teh - RunningMan 0 Comments

Hills BBQ Noodle Shop
586 Station Street
Box Hill
Melbourne
Victoria 3182
Australia


https://www.zomato.com/melbourne/hills-bbq-noodle-shop-box-hill


Ginger & Spring Onion Crab Noodles (AUD $104 / SGD $97.20)



Old School Hong Kong Chinese Diner With Feel

(Ratings: On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 = Worst and 10 = Best)
Overall: 6
Ambience & Setting: 2
Food & Beverage: 8
Service: 3 / 7
Value for Money: 6
Spent about AUD $15 / SGD $14 or AUD $52 / SGD $49 per person.


.....


Let's get this out of the way first - Hills BBQ Noodle Shop doesn't care about your 'modern standards'. If they were a person, Hills BBQ Noodle Shop would be a geriatric senior, angrily yelling that things were better back in their day. There's little information about Hills BBQ Noodle Shop online, and what little there is, is mostly negative, calling out their uncaring service, tacky ambience, and questionable hygiene practices. Yet, Hills BBQ Noodle Shop still chuggs along, as it has for over 30 years (since at least 1990 or earlier, who knows), with students and labourers returning time and again for their authentic Chinese Cantonese Hong Kong roasts and other dishes.

Ambience at Hills BBQ Noodle Shop is a blast from the past, and not exactly the good kind. The tacky place looks stuck in mid 90s Hong Kong, harshly lit by bright flourescent lights, with faded wooden panels and peeling yellowed posters on the walls. Old-school metal and wooden furniture is tightly packed in the cramped space, leading to a noisy, bustling atmosphere when the place is crowded. The checkered green and while floor tiles and touches of Oriental decor complete the kitschy look, while a slight lingering odour of cooking hangs in the air. The greasy roast meat display doesn't look like it's regularly cleaned. At least the place offers sufficient warmth on cold days.

Service at Hills BBQ Noodle Shop is usually transactional in nature, with little engagement, and not much display of product knowledge. At worst, it can be biased or clueless, particularly if you don't speak Mandarin or Cantonese. There's less regard for hygiene, we noticed cutlery to be slightly unclean (I made sure to wash it all with tea and wipe it down before use), and tables aren't cleared or cleaned promptly when diners leave. The floor can sometimes be slightly slippery, seemingly with some grease. If you speak Mandarin, standards suddenly improve, and you get decent engagement, with staff acceding to requests. At best, you need to speak Cantonese, and you'll even receive a complimentary soup dish on the house.

Food at Hills BBQ Noodle Shop is the highlight. They focus on serving traditional, authentic, Chinese Cantonese cuisine, mostly the sort you'll get in Guangzhou, China, or Hong Kong. In particular, people come for their roast meats and soups, which are consistently executed and tasty. Portions are large for individuals, and prices for regular one-person meals are cheap - this leads many students to dine here. However, prices for seafood tend to be more expensive than elsewhere, and crabs are at a premium. Budget about AUD $15 / SGD $14 for a one-person meal, and about AUD $52 / SGD $49 per person for a full meal with seafood.

As they say, ignorance is bliss. I was brought here by friends who used to dine here when they were students in Australia, and only found the negative reviews online much later after the visit. Actually, the food is delicious, and I wouldn't mind returning again - all things considered, it really does feel like you've been transported to a back alley in Hong Kong.


.....


Hills BBQ Noodle Shop Exterior
Hills BBQ Noodle Shop Exterior


Hills BBQ Noodle Shop Interior
Hills BBQ Noodle Shop Interior



The Double-Boiled Fish & Pork Soup With Preserved Silverbeet ($Complimentary) is born out of whatever spare cuts the chef has around, plus a robust stock of fish and pork bones. You only get served this dish if you order in Cantonese; indicating you're 'one of their people'. It's not on the menu, as this nourishing, warming, hearty soup also doubles as part of the staff meal, thus, it changes daily. It has a medley of tender ingredients, including pork belly, preserved silverbeet, barramundi fish, and carrots. While the soup has a thin texture, it carries robust salty sweet earthy flavour, helping to open the appetite.

Double-Boiled Fish & Pork Soup With Preserved Silverbeet ($Complimentary)


Double-Boiled Fish & Pork Soup With Preserved Silverbeet
Double-Boiled Fish & Pork Soup With Preserved Silverbeet



The Soy Sauce Chicken (AUD $10 / SGD $9.40 Half) actually isn't that great; as the chicken meat was rather firm with a light bouncy chew, not as tender as I would like. The soy sauce gravy infuses it with bold salty savoury notes, complementing the natural sweet savoury flavour of the chicken.

Soy Sauce Chicken (AUD $10 / SGD $9.40 Half)


Soy Sauce Chicken
Soy Sauce Chicken



The Roast Duck (AUD $15 / SGD $14 Half) here is excellent. The roasted duck has a tender, juicy, succulent chew to texture. Each bite carries a lovely meaty savoury salty smoky flavour, and the duck fats lend a touch of decadence. So yummy, this is a must-order for me. I observed many other diners also ordering this. Highly recommended!

Roast Duck (AUD $15 / SGD $14 Half)


Roast Duck
Roast Duck



The Fried Pig's Intestines (AUD $19.80 / SGD $18.50) feature strips of pig's intestines that are spice marinated then deep-fried, resulting in a slightly crisp exterior, with a tender and moist interior. This traditional Chinese snack has a deep savoury salty spice flavour, and I'm surprised that this is much less gamey than expected.

Fried Pig's Intestines (AUD $19.80 / SGD $18.50)


Fried Pig's Intestines
Fried Pig's Intestines



The Steamed Barramundi Fish In Hong Kong Superior Soy Sauce (AUD $42 / SGD $39.30) is a typical Chinese Cantonese dish, made using fresh local barramundi fish. Love the tender flaky barramundi fish, which has gentle sweet savoury flavour. The aromatics of light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, ginger, shallots, spring onions, Shaoxing rice wine, sugar, and sesame oil, all infuse the fish with herbal earthy salty savoury flavour. Goes great with white rice.

Steamed Barramundi Fish In Hong Kong Superior Soy Sauce (AUD $42 / SGD $39.30)


Steamed Barramundi Fish In Hong Kong Superior Soy Sauce
Steamed Barramundi Fish In Hong Kong Superior Soy Sauce


Steamed Barramundi Fish In Hong Kong Superior Soy Sauce


Steamed Barramundi Fish In Hong Kong Superior Soy Sauce



The Ginger & Spring Onion Crab Noodles (AUD $104 / SGD $97.20) is the house signature dish, and the one reason we visited. It's really expensive for a crab dish, but it seems all other nearby restaurants charge similar prices, so it's market rate for the Box Hill area. This features a large steamed Australian mud crab, stir-fried in a rich ginger and spring onion gravy, and served over thin crispy chewy yellow egg noodles. While the crab has a clean sweet savoury herbal flavour, the star is actually the noodles, which absorbs all the aromatics of the ginger and spring onion gravy, and the essence of the crab and crab roe, making it luscious and delicious. Highly recommended!

Ginger & Spring Onion Crab Noodles (AUD $104 / SGD $97.20)


Ginger & Spring Onion Crab Noodles
Ginger & Spring Onion Crab Noodles



.....








.....


You Might Also Like