In China, "Flower Drum" is known as a traditional dance famous for its beauty and elegance. In Melbourne, it is a Chinese restaurant that displays the same elements of refinement and delicacy through our concept of fine dining Cantonese cuisine and dedicated service. Flower Drum, the restaurant, is a place that believes in combining great food, fine wine and impeccable service for a unique dining experience each and every time.
In 1975, Gilbert Lau opened The Flower Drum in Chinatown on Little Bourke Street. What began as a humble desire to serve good Cantonese food to the people in Australia soon grew to be a reputable restaurant that sent food critics into an excited flurry. Gilbert's high standards for both himself and his staff allowed Cantonese cuisine to penetrate the tough Australian food market, ultimately establishing a Chinese restaurant that would rival the dominant European cuisines.
A decade later, Flower Drum moved from its initial premises in Little Bourke Street to its current location, at 17 Market Lane to accomodate a growing clientale with a more spacious dining room. It was also during this time that Chef Anthony Lui was appointed Executive Chef, a position he still holds today.
The working partnership of Gilbert and Anthony provided the restaurant with many accolades. This included the prestigious title of Restaurant Of The Year by the Age Good Food Guide from 1999 to 2002 and again in 2004. It was also awarded Restaurant of the Year by Gourmet Traveller Magazine in 2002 and was recognised as one of the world's top 50 restaurants by Restaurant Magazine in England in 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005.
In 2003, Gilbert sold his beloved restaurant to his three employees, Executive Chef Anthony Lui, William Shek and Patricia Fung. Today, they continue the execution of his philosophies in food and service with the aid of Jason Lui, Operational Manager and son of Executive Chef, Anthony Lui.