Tag Archives: Prahran

mixed feelings about Misty’s

I want to keep loving Misty’s, I really do. I’ve been quite a few times – even long ago enough for this sign not to mean anything to me, oh those days of innocence.

Sierra Nevada sign

One of my old friends used to live in the area and first suggested we go. It’s really cool inside – 50s booths and memorabilia on the walls.

Sadly, when I last went there to take L while she was down from Sydney, we went on a very busy evening. First we were told that we could only dine in if we wanted to sit outside. There were lots of bookings and we didn’t have one. That’s fine: we chose to eat outside rather than not eat here at all.

Later on, we learnt that you could indeed sit inside if you were willing to wait and that many folks did do this. Argh, what the hell?! Anyway, we were here and we placed our order. As I tell newcomers as it was told to me, cheesy chilli fries are the way to go when you’re here for your first time.

These are the famous cheesy chilli fries, when eaten at the restaurant. Yup, they look a little gross but they’re so freaking good.

cheesy chilli fries

This is what we ended up with instead, eaten huddled in my parked car. These are wet fries – still delicious and reminiscent of poutine. Originally we ordered the dish above as a starter to share but they forgot to put in our order. Yes yes, of course we asked about it a few times and got it when we’d actually finished our mains. The reason we got wet fries instead of cheesy chilli fries was because when someone came out to confirm our order for the third or fourth time (seriously, I lost count), I was told that because I’d said yes when the lady said ‘wet fries’, I got wet fries.

My bad that the wait staff, the dude taking my order and the kitchen staff initially stuffed up my order. I confess I just said yes so I could get my food and get the hell out of there to somewhere warm.

Still, the wet fries are good and me, Tristan and L gobbled them up like hungry, hungry hippos. Basically, they’re what I initially ordered but without the spiciness – gravy, melted cheese and chopped spring onions.

wet fries

But let’s get back to when we were still dining at the restaurant and not forced to my car shivering like mad.

L decided on the Philly cheese dog for her main. It looked and smelt so good! Lots of onions, thinly sliced beef and drowned in sauce. If I went back I would so order this next time!

philadelphia steak sandwich

Tristan and I shared the ‘I Want What Misty’s Having’ platter – which was two mini blue cheese and Cajun burgers, and a serve to share of the mini blue cheese salad and mini taco nachos. This is perfect if you’re wanting to try out lots of things and not feel sick with overeating!

what misty's having

These burgers are small. Here’s my fist curled next to one for comparison’s sake. Suck on that White Castle!

what misty's having

Crazily, despite us girls freezing our tits off outside, we still had to have the thickshakes. L and I shared a cherry cola one – I am a fan from way back.

cherry cola thickshake

Tristan went for one of their most popular ones – a Reese’s pieces thickshake. I don’t even like Reese’s peanut butter cups but have to admit the thickshake is delicious.

reece's pieces thickshake

Tristan reckons the food here is so good that despite the appalling customer service on this occasion, I’d still come back. There are loads of things on the menu I do still want to try and it’s guilty pleasure eating at its finest but no. I won’t be returning, not even for takeaway, not even for the breakfast burrito I saw on their menu and not even in spite of their ability to cater for vegetarians (there are loads of vegetarian options, believe it or not!).

So yeah, if you know of any other ace places offering the American junk food experience in all its glory, you be sure to let me know! I could never ever fault the food at Misty’s Diner but am not returning (or indeed recommending) a place where they make you feel like their incompetence is something you have to grin and bear. I’m pretty downcast about having to ‘demote’ one of my favourite junk food haunts.

Misty's Diner on Urbanspoon

when the epic dumplings call

Tristan’s work hoes, as he affectionately calls them were expressing some sort of spectator envy over his wine-and-dine escapades. He therefore directed them to hush, and pick a day when they were all available for some good nosh and we’d all go out for a meal. He chose HuTong Dumpling Bar. Of course, he left it too late and the CBD one was all booked out (though former EDSer Ryan reviewed that here). I saved our arses and we ended up with a booking at the Prahran one, though politely informed we’d need to vacate by 8pm. Somehow, I was given the task of choosing food for all of us. Gulp. I’d sent a quick text message to fellow foodie Alex to ask what the must-haves were en route to the restaurant.

Like duh Gem. No one but no one goes to HuTong without sampling their much fussed-over shao-long bao. Reminiscent of snow hats with the pom-poms at the top cut off, these unassuming morsels hold a gelatinous broth as well as meat. Be careful when you bite into these! You may get burnt. We made sure we ordered plenty for our table of six and they went down a treat.


Appetites suitably whetted, grins on our faces and excellent conversation a-flowing, more delicacies in dumpling form followed. For variation, we got some vegetable dumplings. A common complaint with meatless food is that it’s tasteless to the more voracious carnivore. These subtly green-tinged parcels were aromatic and flavoursome, featuring a delicate combination of ginger and mushroom.


D also suggested we get some Peking duck dumplings. As if anyone would veto that idea! I love that the slightly translucent skins hint at the tastiness encased within.


For mains, we shared a trio of dishes and decided to cover our omnivore bases by ordering one seafood, one red meat and one poultry dish. I chose the tea-flavoured diced beef. Smoky, crunchy but perhaps could have done with a bit more beef and a little less salt. There were loooooooots of tea leaves left after we fished out the meat!


Next up, deep fried salt and pepper squid, cooked perfectly and seasoned with sliced chilli. Lightly battered and fresh, but nothing supremely exciting.


The best of the mains was probably the Shanghai braised chicken in tea flavour. There was some debate about choosing this given one of our mains was already ‘tea-flavoured’ – however, this was very different to the diced beef dish. The meat was supremely tender, the tea flavour very subtle and there was five-spice to season to your taste. I think L might have been responsible for making sure we ended up trying this, whee!


HuTong Dumpling Bar in Prahran is right next to the gleaming boutique Cullen Hotel. The restaurant is spacious and you can even have drinks at the front bar as you wait for your table. It seems common to complain about the service, but none of us experienced anything untoward on the night we all dined – the staff were helpful and friendly despite it was pretty darn busy. Our meal came to a happy conclusion at quite some time before we were to be ‘booted out’ so to speak, but we did not feel pressured to leave in a rush (wish I could say the same for MoVida!).

Here’s hoping there’ll be more future dining antics with T’s work hoes and their beaux!

HuTong Dumpling Bar on Urbanspoon