The Weekend Post - Cairns Eye - - Front Page -

Word has spread about the won­drous cre­ations em­a­nat­ing from the Mr Soyboy kitchen. Food­ies reg­u­larly post pic­tures of chef Ferdi’s de­lec­ta­ble dishes on so­cial me­dia, brag­ging about their in­dul­gences.

Mean­while, faith­ful fol­low­ers have edged this mod­est Ear­lville eatery to the num­ber one spot (ahead of much fancier restau­rants) on an in­ter­net site al­low­ing vis­i­tors to have their voice (good and bad) about their din­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.

It’s fair to say with Ferdi in the kitchen, which he al­ways is, and wife Lanya ready to lend a hand, this fam­ily-owned restau­rant does not put a foot wrong.

Start­ing out just more than a year ago in a most un­pre­ten­tious man­ner with a few plas­tic tables and chairs in a re­silient spot along busy Mul­grave Rd, Ferdi and Lanya set up shop with one in­ten­tion: To serve fab­u­lous food at the most af­ford­able prices pos­si­ble.

Along the way they’ve spruced up ap­pear­ances, ac­quired a liquor li­cense and a few more staff, but never let go of the care­fully man­aged reins, or the fo­cus on the big picture.

A clas­si­cally trained French chef of Philip­pine birth and Aus­tralian up­bring­ing, Ferdi’s view on food is panoramic.

While Mr Soyboy is dubbed mod­ern Asian, Ferdi brings classy touches to ev­ery­day dishes and never, ever short­cuts.

Ev­ery­thing – from pickles and sausages to sor­bet – is made by hand on the premises.

Tonight we’re de­ter­mined to stay the dis­tance, as we’ve been thwarted in pre­vi­ous at­tempts at the grand fi­nale – dessert.

It’s just too easy, you see, to want ev­ery­thing – soups, cur­ries, mar­i­nated roasted meats, stir­fries – it’s all en­tic­ing and you get swept up in a tor­rent of greedy de­sire.

Be­fore you know it, you are forced to sur­ren­der be­fore the fi­nal whis­tle. But not tonight. Tonight, with kids in tow, we’ve played clever and or­dered the fam­ily plat­ter and just a cou­ple of ex­tra dishes for oomph.

In pro­ces­sion, the dip­ping sauces and pick­led paw­paw are brought forth.

Next, bowls of steamed rice and plates of sea­sonal veg­eta­bles.

It is worth not­ing Mr Soyboy wok-tossed veg­eta­bles – beans, car­rots, broc­coli, cau­li­flower, car­rot and zuc­chini – are sim­ple and sen­sa­tional.

Al­ways per­fectly al dente, they are served in a light gar­lic sauce.

Last, a tray bear­ing suc­cu­lent roasts of honey soy chicken, duck, crispy pork and bar­be­cued pork ar­rives.

We can’t choose a favourite. No sooner do you think the del­i­cately mar­i­nated chicken meat is best, then you tuck into the crisp salty per­fec­tion of pork crack­ling, or take a bite of lush roasted duck flesh. It is all supreme.

In the name of diver­sity we have added a cou­ple of prawn dishes – gar­lic prawns and spicy prawns, both out­stand­ing. A gen­er­ous serve of large juicy prawns on each plate, with as­sorted veg­eta­bles and sea­son­ing.

If you like heat, the spicy prawns are a must.

The menu here is ex­ten­sive and, to be hon­est, choices can be dif­fi­cult be­cause ev­ery­thing is ex­cel­lent. There are, how­ever, plans afoot to make things sim­pler (while re­tain­ing a la carte) to in­tro­duce a weekly ta­ble d’hote of en­tree, main and dessert.

Speak­ing of dessert, we’ve opted for share plates of the trio of sor­bet – mango, co­conut and ly­chee with lime, served with a crisp home­baked but­tery bis­cotti.

Not ex­ces­sively sweet, you can dis­tinc­tively taste the fruit in each flavour, so much so, you can al­most kid your­self it’s health food. A per­fect fin­ish to a per­fect fam­ily feast. Ver­dict: In­for­mal set­ting with five-star food.

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