Gourmet Trips

Long live the (BBQ) King

When I walked past the BBQ King along Goulburn Street in Sydney Chinatown, the doors were shut with a forlorn “To Lease” sign appearing on the window, the interior stripped bare of ducks and laminated tables. Was it the end for one of Chinatown’s most legendary venues?

For 36 years (since 1978), Sydney Chinatown’s BBQ King has been churning out barbecued ducks and serving tired and emotional customers until the pre-dawn hours. One entrance is for takeaways BBQ, where all the day’s hard work was on display, and you can gauge from amount and variety of roasts hanging on the racks, this cannot be too bad.

The other entrance led you to the dine-in section. There’s a bigger second floor that you can sit down and order Hong Kong style stir-fry dishes aka tzechar style

On the second floor, you can enjoy reasonably priced Cantonese cooking. The ingredients are really fresh and the cooking as good as you can get outside of Hong Kong.

The waiters were old uncles and aunties that have been working at the establishment for years. And when they saw that we were ordering too much, they warned us about the portion size, reminding us that we are not in HK but Australia, so everything is more.

Where the new BBQ King will open remains a mystery but the question remains: will a renovated BBQ King still have the same appeal as the dingy two-level venue of old?

BBQ King 得記燒臘
18-20 Goulburn St, Haymarket Chinatown, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9267 2586

Date Visited : Multiple visits in 2014

PS: Aug 2020 – Old Goulburn location closed in 2015, new Liverpool Street location opened in 2016. Due to Covid-19, they announced that they are finally closed for good in Aug 2020.

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