Kiroren Restaurant, 253B Barkly Street, Footscray. Phone: 0435 555 658
Meeting Justin on a Friday for a feed at a small family restaurant where it’s cash-only and the ordering requires patience because of a language gap – NOW it feels like we’re out of lockdown and Consider The Sauce is back in business!
Truth is, my dining companion had his eye on this eating house before lockdown, so it’s a pleasure to follow-up on this Uyghur place.
The restaurant dining room looks plain and comfy – but as it’s fine, if a little cool, we settle into the sole outdoor table.
The menu is longish, the prices orthodox and the fare very similar to that offered by Karlayisi on Gordon Street.
And that means we already have a pretty good idea of what we’re about to order.
We find the food to be excellent – with one minor mis-step on our part.
Tarhamak salat ($14) is described as “cucumber salad with garlic sauce”.
It certainly looks garlicky!
However, we discover the bulb flavour is rather muted in favour of sesame oil.
The salad is wonderful – cool and delicious.
There was a time – not so long ago – when I would’ve grumbled a bit about paying $14 for a plate of chopped cucumber.
But no more; this is worth every cent, so expertly done is it.
Heck, it could even be described the highlight of our meal!
Aqqik gorush chopi kormisi ($15) is described as “stir-fried rice noodles with chicken, onion, bird’s eye chilli and celery” – and is affixed with three chillis, denoting extreme heat.
In true, we find it to be only mild in the spice department – perhaps the cooking was tweaked to accommodate the paleface pair sitting outside.
No matter – we love it anyway.
Typically, we find it to be not so much in the stir-fried style; it’s wetter than that – and more like the soup noodles found in other Asian parts.
There’s a smallish dumpling offering here, but we have no qualms about ordering what appear to be the orthodox steamed versions.
Tugra ($15) of beef, onion and “veg” are top notch.
Naturally, this being an Uyghur establishment, we order some barbecued lamb.
Koroga kawap ($8) is lamb ribs.
They’re fatty, cumin-infused and gorgeous eating.
Nope, these aren’t figs – they’re borak kawap ($6).
Unfortunately, the lambs kidneys are a bit too offal real for both of us.
But considering all else we have enjoyed, that seems no big deal.
We figure Kiroren is a very handy addition to Footscray Central eats options.