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Rice Paper Scissors

Enjoy all the Asian fusion food at Rice Paper Scissors' new Fitzroy venue.
By Tomas Zagoda
September 23, 2015
By Tomas Zagoda
September 23, 2015

Anyone who has experienced the joys of travelling through South East Asia, and the huge variety of delicious flavours found in hawker markets, will share the excitement of returning to those tastes here in Melbourne upon a visit to Rice Paper Scissors. Fitzroy is the locale for the restaurant's second venue, with the first having been open for a while now in the CBD. It's safe to say that the team has not dropped the ball in the duplicate — the food and atmosphere are just as great as the original.

The atmosphere is very relaxed, a welcome difference from the chaos and noise of true hawker markets. For people like us who don't just want one dish, but want all the food, there is cause for celebration. The style here is all about sharing plates and multiple mini meals. The friendly staff will explain how to get to grips, quite literally, with the perfectly presented food — you are encouraged to eat with your hands for most dishes, and a lemon water basin is provided to refresh those sticky fingers between delicious bites.

We found the amount of attention given to the menu for those with dietary restrictions exceptional and truly reflects that this team understand the Fitzroy area. The majority of meals can be altered for vegetarians and vegans. Expertly treated tofu replaces the meat component of these dishes in an exceptional way — even your meat-loving companions will adore them. Having said that, those carnivorously inclined will definitely find a lot on the menu to sink their teeth into.

Leaving the difficult task of what to pick from the menu in the capable hands of our waiter, we were excited about each new and impressively presented meal to arrive. The crispy coconut cups ($16.50) are filled with caramelised pork with prawn and smoked salmon caviar. The vegetarian adaption is equally as explosive. Yam pla foo — or tapioca-dusted barramundi ($17) — with a green apple and roast cashew salad was a standout dish, full of zesty, fresh flavours matched perfectly with the flawlessly cooked fish. Or there's suckling pug steamed buns ($17) enhanced by pickled cucumber and hoisin sauce. You can order five different dishes for $45 per person, which is easily enough to fill two hungry bellies.

If you're after something with a little kick, then look no further than the Thai influenced cocktails. The Rice Paper Spritzer ($19) is made with plum wine, gin, rose syrup and prosecco, and an interesting version of an espresso martini ($17) using condensed milk is available for those with a sweet tooth. Our pick for a refreshing summer drink over some spicy food would be the Lemongrass Tom Collins ($22): lemongrass infused gin with cucumber and sparkling soda.

If you can't make it to Fitzroy, Rice Paper Scissors also has a second location in the city, at 15 Hardware Lane, Melbourne.

Updated Monday, April 11

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