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No. 38

Sunnys Chinese

THERE IS NO NEON, only a handscrawled sign on cardboard to help guide customers through a door next to a vintage clothing shop and down a dodgy corridor to Sunnys. Still, by 6:30 p.m. on a Monday, the place is hopping. Here, David Schwartz and Braden Chong (head chef at dressed-up sister restaurant Mimi Chinese) take diners on a journey through regions of China and the hot chilies they hold dear. Servers know their stuff and happily explain the intricate pepper-led ingredients in each dish, though heat is not the goal and should not be feared. Layers of slow-burning sensations slowly ignite the palate. The depth of flavour in beef jerky comes, irresistibly, from garlic and Szechuan peppercorns. Dan Dan noodles are suitably dry and piquant. Typhoon Shelter Squid is barely battered rings and tentacles fried and dressed in garlic, shallot and more chilies, a misting of lemon tying things up. Go tasting menu or à la carte, but be sure to try Husband and Wife Beef, a cold dish of marinated tripe, shank and tendon kicked up with chili oil. Cocktails, sakes, baijius and wines are well chosen. The room, decorated with inviting hues recalling a ’50s diner, is comfortable and low-key, as is the vibe and, mercifully, the well-tuned music system.

Best Seat
At the chef’s counter or at the bar in the back, the height providing excellent viewing.

Photography by Gabriel Li

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