We commenced at Brown's Bakery in lovely Maling Road as a preliminary to a window-shopping stroll which turned into a bit of expenditure on the part of The Director. Along with my hot chocolate and her latte, we had cupcakes. Brown's will have to keep trying. They are not up to Crabapple Cupcake standard. The violent electric blue of the cupcake decor is not very appealing. So the verdict is nice - but keep trying.
Then it was off for the stroll. We detoured ever so slightly into that beautiful by-way, Theatre Place. Now I can't recall the name of this establishment but if, on entering Theatre Place, dear Reader, you steer to the right and go down to the end you will come to a little shop which is part eatery, part homewares. This is where The Director purchased these for me:
These are oven mitts which will withstand temperatures of 300 degrees Celsius. I look forward to a burn free future and being able to withdraw hot, heavy baking dishes with much greater dexterity and confidence than previously. Thank you, dear Director.
Then there was the charming Ring of Roses where The Director found some lovely gifts to take back to Brisbane.
This was followed by dinner at Box Hill. On the corner of Station Street and Whitehorse Road stands an amazing edifice. It has large red double doors. And above the large red doors is a huge poster portrait of Chiang Kai-shek. For quite a while, Miss Eagle has wondered what it all meant. Was this a beachhead for Taiwan in downtown Box Hill? Is factional politics alive and well among the Chinese community of the eastern suburbs of Melbourne? And what on earth did Chiang Kai-shek have to do with Chinese cuisine? And was the food any good?
On Friday night, we walked through the red doors under the portrait of Chiang and had the last two questions answered for us. The restaurant is devoted to Chiang and there are large images and explanations around the restaurant. Miss E is familiar with this history. The part she has always been fascinated with has been the history of Madame Chiang. You see, dear Reader, Madame Chiang (Soong May-Ling) is one of the three legendary Soong Sisters. It is said that one married money (Ai-Ling), one married power (May-Ling), and one married China (Ching-Ling). The residence of Sun Yat Sen and Ching-Ling in Shanghai is said to be the most harmonious house in terms of Feng Shui.
The Post-Chiang restaurant celebrates the cuisine of Zhejiang Province in mainlaind China. Chiang was a native of Zhejiang and maintained a preference for the cuisine. We were three: The Director, Miss Eagle, and herself. And I think it safe to say that we, too, now have a preference for the cuisine of Zhejiang. We had prawns in a stir-fry and Beijing duck (they wrap the duck in pancakes at the table for you). Be-yoot-i-ful. Best Beijing duck ever. The restaurant is licensed so no need for BYO. The tablecloths are crisp and white, the waiting staff are subtle and constant. The decor is great. The prices are reasonable. If you want cheap Chinese chow, this is not for you. But, for a dash of Chinese elegance and excellent, well-served and presented food and value for money, then the Post-Chiang fills the bill. I'm dreaming of Yum-Cha now. Anyone else want to come?