A spot at Mal Chow’s table offers a break from cookie-cutter Margaret River fine dining, with a Malaysian Chinese menu served in a refined regional setting.

While so many Margaret River restaurants equate using local produce with a particular style of cooking – think rustic farmhouse or tweezered fine-dining fare – Chow’s Table flips the script. Here the produce aligns with so many of the nearby big-hitters, but the style is purely its own, drawing on chef Mal Chow’s Malay-Chinese roots and his background in some of the nation’s top kitchens (Tetsuya’s and Vue de Monde among them).

Here the produce aligns with so many of the nearby big-hitters, but the style is purely its own, drawing on chef Mal Chow’s Malay-Chinese roots and his background in some of the nation’s top kitchens (Tetsuya’s and Vue de Monde among them).

The result is a winery-style restaurant that starts strong with the likes of Akoya oysters tossed in curry butter and served on the shell or neatly pleated pork dumplings sharpened aggressively with chives and black vinegar, then follows it up with extra saucy Chinese-style roast Wagin duck.

Not every dish sticks the landing – roti is on the doughy side; eggplant mapo tofu lacks a hot-numbing punch – but how refreshing to have a chef break away from the tried-and-true regional formula so thoroughly.

Bring in waiters who hit their marks, a wine list that adds interest around the requisite bottles from partnering House of Cards (along with some good Japanese beers), a sleek fit-out and well-sourced flatware and a seat at Chow’s Table remains an enticing prospect. Pull up a chair.