“A platform for the unconventional, we have always done more than just great food. Like always, expect the unexpected and dare to dine with us this party season.”
It’s a bold statement coming from any restaurant, but when the words are straight from Lucas Restaurants creative director Holly Lucas, you know she can back it up.
The group’s flagship diner Chin Chin made waves when it first opened in Melbourne, and its standing as a giant of the city’s dining scene hasn’t changed in the 10 years since.
To celebrate the decade milestone, the restaurant is throwing a month-long birthday bash in its Melbourne location, but Sydney gets to join in on the fun, too, with three one-off dinners leading up to a grand shindig in collaboration with local artists who’ve been part of the Chin Chin story.
On Monday June 7, the Thai eatery is turning up the heat with Chilli Inferno, a night dedicated to eye-watering spice. On the menu you’ll find dishes such as crispy pork belly and snake beans in a dry red curry; pad khaprao (holy basil stir-fry) with seafood; and nahm prik, a staple condiment made with fermented shrimp paste and fiery chilli. American spirits company Brown-Forman is helping cool things down with refreshing cocktails, beers and wines curated to enhance the spice journey.
The next day, on Tuesday June 8, expect a spread of vegetarian and plant-based earthly delights in the Garden of Eatin’. Lush garden greenery is the backdrop for a feast of crispy noodle salad with sweet corn, roasted long green eggplant with stir-fried tofu and northern-style mushroom laab, all with drinks to match. Fable Food Co is providing mushroom-growing kits for attendees to take home, and they come with Chin Chin menus to try when the shrooms are fully grown.
Then there’s executive chef Benjamin Cooper’s Dream Dinner on Wednesday June 9, featuring boundary-pushing Southeast Asian dishes that have never made it on the Chin Chin menu, but are leaving the confines of his imagination and going straight to the table for one night only. The intricate dishes will be paired with riesling and classic cocktails from Chin Chin and Go Go Bar’s repertoire, thanks to Brown-Forman.
Then there’s the birthday party on Thursday June 10 – the culminating candle-blowing event celebrating the last 10 years of the restaurant’s history.
“For the past decade, Chin Chin has pushed the boundaries and embraced the untraditional,” Lucas says. “We’re celebrating by inviting you to experience the flavour, flair and fun for a birthday bash like no other, collaborating with local artists, performers and creatives who have weaved their artistry into the Chin Chin timeline.”
It’s a crossover of food, art, music and culture alongside past collaborators such as curator and artist ØFF€RÎNGS, who helped bring Chin Chin’s immersive theatre-dining experience to life in 2019, alongside DJs Sveta and Estee Louder. Tickets for all four of Chin Chin’s 10th birthday events cost $165 per person. Bookings are open now.