We only needed a working day in between Christmas and New Year’s to score a table at Rey Jr’s!
Ever since Rey Jr opened its doors on Little Hay Street, we’ve been cruising by trying to spy a free table. But to date, no such luck…But it took a Friday afternoon in between Christmas and New Year’s, for us to score an available table, allowing us to try the ‘express’ version of Darlinghurst’s full menu from Rey’s Place, serving up modern takes on traditional Filipino food.
An outdoor menu enables you to review what’s on offer before you step foot into their hole-in-the-wall store, before you make your orders at the bar. We ordered the Sisig ($16.00), the Ginataang Gulay ($14.00) and the BBQ Corn Coblette to share ($7.00).
We occupied one of the small tables for two at their doorway, and the first thing which stood out for us was how friendly the staff were and how their music selection was right up my alley (2000s Rap/Hip Hop). In less than 10 mins our small share arrived.
The corn on the cob was cut into slender quarters, making them super easy to handle and to eat! As advised by our server when he placed the tray before us, the BBQ corn cobs were also super buttery – hence the need for extra serviettes, and they were dusted with a light coating of chilli powder. Within 4 minutes I had consumed my share of the tasty corn fingers, and meanwhile our rice bowls had arrived.
I started off with the Sisig – twice cooked pork belly with a salty sweet flavour profile. The meat was cut into small pieces, so you were able to easily scoop up a forkful of meat, rice, and pickled veg all in one mouthful.
Meanwhile my wife started off with the Ginataang Gulay- a selection of vegetables (pumpkin, okra, beans, and eggplant) cooked in coconut cream. It was sweeter than it was savoury, and very creamy and filling for a non-meat dish.
Our verdict? 3.5 Stars from 5! (2 from 3 for Food (everything was tasty and ready to be consumed on the go, thus making it a good take-away option for the nearby office crowd); 0.5 from 0.5 for Service (the server was super friendly which made our brief stay at their place feel like a neighbourhood affair); 0.5 from 0.5 for Atmosphere (the store is rustic and super small, but they play a cool Rap/Hip Hop playlist which might not be to everyone’s taste, and the tables are quite close together so you can hear every word from the neighbouring table); and 0.5 from 1.0 for Value for money ($37 for two for lunch is pretty standard these days, not bad while not being super economical either)).
We’re glad that we finally got to try Rey Jr, and got some Filo food back in our belly’s after a long absence (we hadn’t had Filo food since the Filo place above Mamak closed down a year ago). The food was good, while not being ‘blow your mind’, but we welcome this much needed variety in Chinatown! It definitely adds to the vibrancy of our town!
Rey Jr- Friday 27 December (3.0 Stars)
PH: (02) 9361 5938
13 Little Hay Street, Haymarket
Mon-Fri 12noon – 3pm, 4.30pm – 9pm
Sat 12noon – 9pm
Sun 12noon – 4.00pm