Restaurant Reviews

Dainty Sichuan

Dainty Sichuan
176 Toorak Rd South Yarra, Melbourne, VIC


Regional Chinese food options have improved significantly over the past decade, yet Dainty Sichuan remains a red-chilli standard for things hot and numbing. And although the Dainty empire has expanded and diversified, its Toorak Road mothership remains a holy site for loyalists. This two-storey house of chilli and lacquered timber serves an exhaustive menu, so bringing a posse (regulars say six, minimum) is essential to making the most of your visit. Cold slices of tripe bathed in a mouthtingling chilli oil taste both hot and cooling. Crisp fingers of “fish flavoured” eggplant, which buzz with no small amount of garlic and chilli, have a cult following for good reason, as do the fiery hotpots. It’s not all daredevil cooking. Dry-fried green beans, pickled vegetables and freshly squeezed watermelon juice offer respite from the heat. Rote service needs attention, but on the whole, the pleasure outweighs the pain at this institution. 


(03) 9078 1686


Bookings essential


  • BYO

  • Licensed

  • Vegetarian-friendly

Accepted card types:

  • Eftpos

  • MasterCard

  • Visa


Tina Li

This review was made independently for the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide. The guide’s reviewers visit unannounced and pay their way.

Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide

Gourmet Traveller’s star-ratings, which range from zero to three stars, reflect reviewers’ first-hand experiences. The best-rated restaurants form our national Top 100. Our wine ratings, from zero to three stars, are made by wine editor Max Allen on the strength of the quality of the restaurant’s wine list. View our rating key here.

Dainty Sichuan
176 Toorak Rd South Yarra, Melbourne, VIC
Tina Li
Bookings essential
Opening Hours
Lunch daily 11.30am-3pm; Dinner Sun-Thu 5pm-9.30pm, Fri-Sat 5pm-10pm

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