Baos, bowls and laksa lasagne – Fu Manchu Oriental unveils a tantalising new menu
Fu Manchu Oriental on Thomas Drive has been igniting culinary curiosity in diners since it opened in 2016. A lot has happened since then, including a shuffle in ownership that saw the venue’s original co-founder Zuraya Hamilton step back into the fray and a substantial two-level renovation that was unveiled in 2019. Having only reopened six months prior to the global pandemic, Zuraya was forced to pivot, and fast. Now, the Chevron Island eatery has come of age and delivered its most creative menu yet.
Fans of Asian fusion are likely well-familiar with Fu Manchu Oriental. Hailed Chevron Island’s best-kept secret by locals, it’s easy to walk past none the wiser. Those who dare to step through the striking matte-black door, however, are greeted with an aesthetically pleasing perch for a beer and a dumpling, or settle in upstairs for a food-filled feast with friends. The brand-new menu represents a significant evolution from its original incarnation. Still broadly categorised as modern Asian fusion, the new offering embraces traditional oriental flavours mixed with European influences and begins with bites like Aburi salmon (flame-seared salmon fillet on a bed of rice with avocado, coriander and wasabi puree), and pork dumplings with spicy peanut sauce and pickled chilli. The bao buns traverse the land and sea, with highlights including the Bulgogi beef (Korean-marinated beef brisket, cabbage, green mustard pickle and kimchi mayo) and crispy Moreton Bay bug meat with Kewpie mayo, spring onions and fried leek.
Resist the urge to fill up on baos, because the large plates are where Zuraya and her culinary team have really raised the bar. One such creation is the seafood laksa lasagne, which brings together two of Zuraya’s all-time favourite dishes into one beautiful hybrid. Whilst creative license has informed much of the menu, there are some that cannot be touched – the Malaysian chicken curry and beef rendang are exactly the way Zuraya’s mother made it – straight-up Malay-style. If you find yourself plagued with indecision, the five-course degustASIAN menu represents excellent value at $45 per person. There’s also a meat-free option for vegetarian and pescatarian pals. Behind the bar, the team has crafted a fun selection of libations that put a vibrant, Asian-style spin on classic cocktails including the Miss Manchu Margarita (Sesión Blanco Tequila, Triple Sec, lime and Himalayan rock salt) and its signature coconut espresso martini, as well as wines (including organic and vegan drops) and sake. The beer taps are pouring craft brews, alongside Fu Manchu’s own house brews. There’s also a new private dining area for those extra-special occasions, because if there’s one thing we’ve learnt from this pandemic, it’s that meals with mates are worth savouring.
Ready to dine on Fu Manchu’s new menu? Skip over to our Stumble Guide for booking information.
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