I have no recollection of the first and second times I ate at Canton in Eastwood (according to Google they were 12/12/2015 and 10/12/2016), but let me tell you about the third.
We ate at Canton, one of Eastwood’s two Hong Kong style cafes, following an off-day teaching session on intracranial pressure management. With a narrow facade but surprisingly deep interior, Canton’s fitout boasts clever acoustic design, with my colleague KSEL pointing out that background noise was at a very minor din despite the restaurant being at full capacity, facilitating easy conversation at our table.
The half roast duck ($18.80) was perfectly adequate, if tepid in temperature. The skin was pleasantly crispy, with well developed musculature of the bird providing meaty bites. I also enjoyed the non-standard dipping sauce, which paired well with the duck with its mild sweetness and tanginess. Despite these good qualities I wish that the duck had not been served at room temperature, as a little bit of warmth can go a long way in opening up flavours and diffusing aromas.
Canton’s roasted pork belly ($18.80) was pretty good, if unusually fatty. Similar to the duck, the skin of the pig had a good crispiness to it, with the rest of the meat and fat melting easily into the mouth. I liked that this pork belly was not too oversalted and therefore more suitable to eat without rice compared to Parramatta competitor Sun Ming. I just wish it weren’t so fatty (but understand it’s a give and take).
The Special Noodles with Soup ($14.80), optioned with braised beef brisket and curry fish balls was quite good. The beef brisket was tasty, soft and tender, and I appreciated the inclusion of tendon along with it. The fish balls seemed like they were just a touch above the usual supermarket freezer stuff, though I wonder if I’ve just been cheaping out at Tong Li. They even gave us five fish balls between the five of us, though I don’t know if this was by accident or by design. An overall good noodle dish which would make a nice solo lunch.
I’ve been craving Hong Kong style claypot rice ever since watching this Goldthread YouTube video, and this was my time to finally have some. We chose the Cantonese Hot Pot Rice with Cured Meat & Chinese Sausage ($16.80). Whilst the rice was good with its crispy edges, I unfortunately thought that the salty toppings and addition of the traditional soy sauce on top made this too salty a dish. I’d probably have this again with some different toppings (love me some lap cheong though), and less of the soy sauce on top.
The Baked Pork Chop with tomato sauce and rice ($16.80) was really good. A generous serving of pork chop, with lots of cheese and mild flavoured housemade tomato sauce. The last time I had Hong Kong style baked rice was back in 2015 in Box Hill, Victoria, and I think this was much better than that time.
I wasn’t a big fan of the curry-flavoured Moroccan Chicken Wings (5 for $7.30), but KSEL liked it so much he ordered it twice in one week.
There aren’t that many Hong Kong cafes out there, and I’m a big fan of this one. Can recommend a visit.
CANTON 煮意 Eastwood
127 Rowe St, Eastwood NSW 2122
(02) 9874 2226
Diners: JW, KSEL, ACHT, KS, MJC