- Establishment: Fo Guang Yuan Vegetarian Tea House
- Address: 141 Queen Street, Melbourne CBD (catch any tram along Bourke St and get off at Queen st, it’s on the right hand side heading towards Flinders Street)
- Hours: Lunch Only Mon – Fri 12pm to 2:30pm, Gallery Mon – Sat 10am to 5pm
- Contact: +61 9642 2388 firstname.lastname@example.org
- Visit date: 11th April, 2012
The initial wait to be served was a bit long and it seemed like an eternity but the staff were very apologetic about it.
Everything here is vegetarian so there was a lot of mock chicken, duck and pork menu items. They have lunch specials for $11.50 but I ordered the Deep fried veg chicken nuggets $7.50 of 10 random sizes that were ok tasting. Slightly spicy with a salty chicken flavour but at least they were of a gentle crispiness. This was followed by Steamed Crystal dumplings with spinach filling $7.50 for 4 pieces that were just a tad over steamed but very flavoursome. They were also surprisingly filling but then again it could of been the gluten content that made my tummy bloat up. I liked how they didn’t fall apart when I took a bite out of the dumpling because the filling looked pretty loose but the skin almost nipped together and made a slight seal.
In between bites of crispy and steamed items, I took sips of beautiful real leaves of Oolong and Sweet Osmanthus tea $3.50 (cup) which is a good for cleansing the palate. It was actually a good match because this tea was light and slightly sweet but with that typical tea tanginess that helped freshen your mouth.
Bonus points for the beautiful and peaceful dining experience and having Eastern flutey ethereal music playing in the background made it a very tranquil and serene. I went for a wander in the gallery afterwards which was mainly of Chinese water colours and scroll illustrations. Upstairs there is a Meditation hall (make sure you take off your shoes first!) and an Enlightenment room where a Buddhist monk in mustard brown clothes sits and talks to you about life.