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Hanuman Restaurant

Holiday Inn Esplanade
93 Mitchell Street
Darwin NT 0800
Tel : +61 8 8941 3500
Fax : +61 8 8941 3711
License: Fully Licensed (no BYO)
Price Range: $$$$
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Hanuman restaurant has developed a devoted following in no less than three Australian cities. The award-winning restaurants serve a broad Asian menu influenced by Thai and Indian flavours in Darwin, Alice Springs and Cairns. Hanuman is renowned for its high quality dishes and the mood lighting that sets the scene in its dining rooms for a special meal.

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Ground floor of the Holiday Inn Esplanade in Darwin central

Aptly named for the popular Hindu deity, Hanuman reigns supreme among restaurants in the Top End pantheon. And it's patron and originator, Jimmy Shu, is a Top End legend. Locals and visitors flock to this classy but unpretentious restaurant to savour Thai, Indian and Nonya dishes served exquisitely with attention to detail. Jimmy's personal recommendation is silver barramundi, a fish that he knew and loved from his Sri Lankan childhood and was delighted to rediscover in the Top End.
It's hard to believe that award-winning Hanuman was unpopular at the outset. Less than a decade back, Darwinites were unfamiliar with the culture and foreign flavours of Jimmy's cuisine, but his passion and persistence were unstoppable. Now locals cannot recommend the Hanuman experience too highly.

And it's an all-round sensual experience. Entering the vast atrium with its spectacular meld of contemporary minimalist decor and ornate Asian carvings, we're greeted and ushered past a gilded Balinese statue to our table. The air is redolent with spice and fragrance. White napkins are laid across our laps. Cool water is already poured. The distinctive chunky cutlery is eye-catching, as are the earthenware plates on the coconut-husk inlaid table.

When we can finally drag our sight to the menu we're drawn this way and that. Trumpet mushrooms, red duck curry, and what is 'Nonya'? We're informed it's a Chinese-Malaysian cuisine that is spicy and tantalising, like the more familiar Indian and Thai dishes. Finally, we opt for a tasting plate followed by Thai crispy whole fish to share. The tasters are Hanuman oysters (a signature dish), chicken tikka so tender it evades description (perhaps it was the rose petal garam masala?), Nonya pork rolls with sweet spicy tamarind syrup and tandoori prawns. Each bite is a heavenly morsel. The fish is exquisitely tender in its sweet, hot and sour sauce. Accompanied by steamed jasmine rice and kang kong greens, this meal is magnificent. The finishing touch to the evening is cardamom and pistachio nut ice cream with an exquisitely formed gulab jamun in rosewater syrup.

Merridy Anne Pugh
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- Readers' Reviews
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Hanuman Restaurant - User Reviews

Stephen Collins:

Having dined at Hanuman on three occasions and on the first I would have rated the restaurant 5 stars, but on subsequent visits with friends and family the service was very ordinary and on the third visit they forgot to bring one of the meals to the table. It was disappointing and after saying so much regarding the quality of the dining to friends, a let down to say the  26/04/2012

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Restaurant Features
Award Winning/Hatted
Outdoor Dining
Suitable for Families with children
Suitable for Functions
Suitable for Groups of 10
Waterside Dining

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