There is nothing better than spending a lazy Sunday afternoon tucking into Yum Cha. Yum Cha, which translates into 'drink tea', has fast become an Aussie favourite. Taipan Chinese Restaurant in Doncaster is on the more expensive side with dishes averaging between the $6-8 mark, but they arguably serve up the best Yum Cha in Melbourne.
If you don't have a booking, don't even bother turning up on a Saturday or Sunday. The restaurant can seat a lot of diners with its two levels and tightly packed tables, but it is almost always full. Service can be slow, and often done without the hint of a smile. We have often waited up to 20 minutes before seeing any food. All is forgiven once the plates are loaded onto our table though. If you can, request a table on the top level, as the service on the lower level can be somewhat lacking. Stairs make it difficult for the carts to make it down, so you run the risk of having less variety.
Taipan make the nicest pork buns, with the filling sweet and tender, and the dough light and fluffy. The steamed prawn dumplings are deliciously fresh with just the right amount of seasoning. If you are game, try the chicken feet, which are surprisingly enjoyable. The variety is endless, and it really is worth getting outside the box and trying different things.
Allow $20-30 per person, more if you intend on drinking alcohol. Yum Cha is the type of cuisine you can't really skimp on.