{Review} Good ol’ Charlie’s

A worthwhile mention of an old favourite of mine is Charlie’s Shack at Chinatown. I get nostalgic every time I visit this place as I remember my first day in Adelaide post-Australia Day about five years ago in 2007. There were a group of us consisting of my parents, a high school friend who has been in Adelaide for a few years and a frequent customer of Charlie’s Shack as well as four new friends I’ve met at the airport who happen to be my new housemates. The place was never meant for large groups with only fifteen seats in total. With eight of us, we filled up more than half of the seats in the place and with the amount of noise we were making, it was a funny sight.

Fast forward about five years later, I was sitting at the bar-like table by the window overlooking the Chinatown archway with my friends waiting for our dinner. A small place ensures that food arrives quickly and before long my steaming bowl of pork chop noodle arrived. Generous strips of pork ribs were marinated in various spices and sauces, resulting in succulent and tender pork that was sweet and savoury at the same time. The pork was served on thin vermicelli noodles which are appropriately bouncy and topped with generous amounts of mint, spring onions, peanuts and fried onions. Finishing the regular portion – they had large ones as well – was just right for my belly and the end result was far from bursing belly discomfort.

The dining buddy requested for the Stir Fried Beef with Rice to be replaced with noodles and her wish was granted. With similar toppings except the spring onions, this dish was served with a little bowl of sweet chili dipping sauce. The beef was once again succulent and falls apart with the slightest force. I always wonder what is it that makes meat this tender. My primary school science knowledge points towards the papaya enzyme papain. Perhaps.

Once again, Charlie’s Shack delivers with their delicious and homely meals without busting the bank. Always a good thing. Will definitely be back for more reminiscing and of course, a good meal.

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Charlie’s Shack | Shop 3/85 Grote Street, Adelaide SA 5000 | (08) 84100018