Food court dining is still on the up in Melbourne, and we checked out all the wonderful Asian delights Box Hill Central has to over. Their huge South Food Court has everything from baos to noodles to cheese tarts. There’s even a fresh food section where you can stock up on all your much needed groceries. Over the other side of the Centre is the smaller North Food court, offering a slightly quieter and more low key opportunity for a quick bite.
We started out at Claypot King in the main food court area and ordered some of their beef in pepper sauce sizzling noodles. We snagged a nearby table (no mean feat on such a busy day) while we waited for our number to be called, and were pleasantly surprised that it took barely 5 minutes for our order to be ready. The dish was immense. And hot! A very generous helping of beef atop a great heaped serve of perfectly cooked noodles that would easily satisfy anyone’s lunchtime cravings, we walked away from this one ready for a lie down and a nap. Alas, we had many more delights still to sample on our Box Hill central expedition.
We decided to head over to Top Tea to try one of their many tasty sounding beverages to wash down our meal, opting for the strawberry and raspberry yoghurt tea. This was a perfect choice after such filling and spicy food. A lovely thick texture and punchy fruity flavours were a great palate cleanser and set us up to continue on our foodie adventure.
To balance out the huge meal we decided to go for something a bit lighter for our next course and so headed across (literally 10 steps away from Top Tea) for some sushi from Sushi Jiro. You could opt to head inside to the main restaurant area with its awesome looking sushi boats, or if you’re in a bit of a rush, there’s a cute little takeaway station next door stocked with dozens of delicious options. This is where we went and found the sushi wonderfully affordable and also surprisingly fresh. We opted for the mixed nigiri and both the tuna and kingfish were top notch.
Not wanting to leave without something sweet we also tried a couple of the puffs from Pafu and some of Hokkaido’s legendary cheese tarts. The Pafu pastries were exceptional. Light and flaky and filled with a rich creamy filling, we tried the coffee and chocolate as well as our favourite, the strawberry puff. They have more of a dessert feel than many European pastries and we thought they were the perfect size given their sweetness.
I was less than impressed with Hokkaido the first time I tried it, but I’m pleased to say they have really found their feet since first opening. Now with multiple branches across Melbourne and a whole range of flavours they’re more like an asian version of the Cheesecake Factory and you can get a dessert to suit anyone. I loved the sweet strawberry option and that sharp crumbliness of the short crust pastry. They held up much better than the originals over time too and even the one we ate the next day still tasted great and the pastry held up well, not losing its consistency at all.
We were sad to leave Box Hill Central, having spent nearly 3 hours there and eating our fill of delicious eats. We definitely had our eye on some dumplings too but just couldn’t squeeze them in this time! Although that’s definitely on our radar for our next visit. And in case you’re wondering we managed all this (including parking) for under $50 so it’s the best place for affordable eats with plenty of variety.
*We’ll look to bring you posts on each individual venue soon too!
Address: 1 Main Street, Box Hill
Mon 9am to 5:30pm
Tue 9am to 5:30pm
Wed 9am to 5:30pm
Thu 9am to 7pm
Fri 9am to 9pm
Sat 9am to 5pm
Sun 10am to 5pm
Parking: The shopping centre has numerous car parks so it is easy to park nearby for a small charge. If you don’t mind a bit of a walk, there are short stay free parking spaces in the surrounding streets, but these are popular and you may have to park a short distance away from the shopping centre.
Getting here on PT: It’s literally attached to Box Hill train station, or two minutes walk from the 109 tram. It’s also well served by many local bus routes.
Disclaimer: We dined as guests of Box Hill Central. Reviews are honest and based on our own personal experiences. We cannot guarantee things at a cafe won’t change including, but not limited to, menu items and opening hours, so please confirm any details with the venue before visiting.