Kisume is Lucas group’s newest venture and it’s another favourite to add to the already popular foodie land of Flinders lane. This venue has a different feel to the other Lucas Group restaurants like Chin Chin, Baby, Kong and Hawker Hall, it has more of a fine dining appeal with a relaxed vibe instead of the hustle and bustle.
The service is top notch and the décor is minimalistic with a touch of provocative Japanese artwork on the walls which projects character and elegance. They have a great selection of wines, rare sake and Japanese whisky. Not to mention a chablis bar. Wine on point.
We started with assorted sushi. We received a wooden box filled with a selection of nigiri (tuna, red mullet, salmon, red emperor, snapper, alfonso). Each one had a different topping to compliment the uniqueness of each fish.
The tuna tataki looked like a beautiful little garden. It had a pond of chilli yuzu ponzu in the middle of the plate, surrounded by a circle of alternating squares of Bluefin tuna and wasabi tofu. The Bluefin tuna was seared on one side topped with sesame and the tofu was topped with caviar and had a good amount of heat while maintaining a subtle and smooth flavour.
The sea urchin ‘uni’ rice crackers were amazing. The delicate sea urchin, the smooth sweet corn puree, pops of caviar, kizami wasabi and might I mention the perfect rice cracker to topping ratio for a perfect textural balance. Loved it.
The steamed king crab gyoza were indulgent and bursting with flavour. They had a thin slouchy skin and were filled with king crab which was a prominent flavour. And to add to the indulgence they were topped with a poached quail egg yolk and served with a bonito vinaigrette.
The crispy wagyu truffles were to die for. Juicy wagyu beef meatballs with a centre of melting mozzarella, coated with a black squid ink crispy crumb and truffle mayo dipping sauce. Love.
We ordered the kakiage and it had beautifully cooked whiting, prawn, mushroom, asparagus, eggplant and corn mixed into a tall tower of tempura. It came with a ponzu sauce and three different salts. It was a fun to mix and match the tempura with the salts.
For dessert we tried the layered pineapple, which was a glass of creamy coconut panna cotta topped with tart pinapple gel and sweet caramelised bruleed pineapple pieces. Then sitting on top of the glass there was a thin layer of dehydrated pineapple holding up a scoop of refreshing pineapple sorbet.
Our next dessert reminded me of a pokemon ball. It was a shiny pink dessert with lots of surprises inside. It was a hazelnut dacquoise with dark chocolate mousse and a Frangelico center with a thin layer of crisp chocolate. The middle oozes out when you cut into it.
They have function spaces upstairs, they accommodate for large groups and the best part of all is that you can make a booking. None of this waiting for two hours business, you can book ahead of time. Thank goodness for that.
I heart Kisume!
Ramen is what I crave on those days when Melbourne weather suddenly turns from full sunshine to cold and rainy. All I want is a beautiful creamy broth with fresh noodles and all the extras. Ikkoryu Fukuoka has a lovely range of ramen and you can customise it just the way you like it. They also have some delicious sides for good value, I don’t know where else I can get 1kg of tasty teriyaki chicken wings for only $19.95. The restaurant is a large, clean space down a basement on Russell street and the food is delish.
We had gyozas and teriyaki chicken wings to start. The gyozas were pan-fried and had a lovely filling, and the wings…well who doesn’t love chicken wings.
The karaage chicken was my fave. The chicken was moist and deep-fried. What more could you want? Well kewpie and lemon perhaps, but it came with that too. I had to restrain myself from eating too many of these bad boys because we were about to eat a whole bowl of ramen.
The croquettes were good too, anything deep-fried, I say. They were filled with potato and minced pork and crumbed with crispy panko.
The dish I was conserving stomach space for was the ramen. Some people know exactly what they want when it comes to ramen and others like myself have no clue. Luckily the menu isn’t too hard to follow. Basically you choose what base you want. They had standard, spicy, yuzu, black garlic and tonkatsu.
I went the plain jane on this occasion, standard. Then you choose if you want a light, medium or heavy soup. This determines how rich you like your broth. Then you choose all the bits and pieces you want with your ramen. They had seaweed, eggs, pork belly, spring onions etc. If you’re a bit of a ramen noob just get a little bit of everything.
The broth was rich and tasty and the noodles were thin and fresh. All the little extras brought the dish alive, especially that thinly sliced pork belly. Yum!
They also have a nice area for larger groups. If you’re in the city, pop in for a tasty bowl of ramen.
I heart Ikkoryu Fukuoka!
Address: 27 Russell St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: (03) 9650 3708
Trading Hours: Tue, Wed, Thu, Sun: 11.30am-3pm & 5.30pm til late, Fri-Sat: 11am-3pm & 5.30pm til late, closed Monday.
Tetsuijin is a new Japanese restaurant opening in the Emporium and they have lots to be excited about. We’re talking a sushi train, robata BBQ grill and ultimately some brilliant Japanese food.
For the launch this space was transformed into a dance floor but will obviously be filled with tables and chairs when it opens tomorrow.
We were greeted with these girls. So cute.
This was the sushi train area.
Oysters were in abundance. They were tasty with a tomato oyster gel and fresh spring onions on top.
They had some crunchy vegetables with dip for starters.
They had potato croquettes on pops so they were easy to eat. Some of them had a creamy mayo sauce and some had a soy dressing.
Salmon and Tuna nigiri with a glass of wine. Perfect!
They had little pork buns which I didn’t get my hands on but the meats were on display, which they would cook on the robata (Jap charcoal) BBQ grill.
This salmon starter was yum. Two mini salmon sushi and a salmon nigiri.
The octopus balls had chunks of octopus inside and were fried in a tempura batter.
These skewers were tasty, they were sweet cherry tomatoes, mini balls of bocconcini dressed with a basil sauce. Yum!
These little delights were deep-fried and were filled with mushrooms and glass noodles.
These vegetarian patties were filled with potato and had a spicy sauce drizzled on top.
You can understand why this assorted plate of sushi was eaten in a matter of seconds. It came out, I took one photo and then they were gone. There was a variety of different sushi served on the night. All delish.
At the launch they had Japanese wallpaper and Yo Mafia playing beats all night. Tasty food and lots of dancing.
Tetsujin opens tomorrow on the 4th floor of the emporium next to Din Tai Fung or you can enter via a lift on Caledonian lane. Be sure to check it out. Kanpai!
I heart Tetsujin!
Address: Shop M0004, Emporium Melbourne, 295 Lonsdale Street, VIC
(Entrance via Little Bourke Street & Caledonian Lane)
Phone: 03 9663 9993
Trading Hours: Sun-Thu: 11am-11pm, Fri-Sat:11am-12am (sushi train closes at 9.30pm everyday)
Note: Olive Sundays was invited as a guest to Tetsujin.
Mr. Miyagi is a Japanese restaurant on Chapel street that embraces traditional Japanese flavours in a modern and unique way. Some of their unusual dishes include the nori taco, tuna tataki pizza and ramen gnocchi. The food is amazing and they have some interesting cocktails and a variety of Japanese beverages available too.
It has a great vibe about it, super stylish and classy with lots of character.
They have a list of items on sticks, which you can order by the piece. I like when you can order onesies because then you can try one of each or order exactly as many as you want.
We ordered a prawn dawg and as I ate it I immediately wanted another one. It had a juicy prawn mixture, coated in crunchy Orion (Japanese beer) batter on a popsicle stick (easy to eat). It was topped with a spicy jalapeno mayonnaise and sprinkled with furikake. It was awesome. Absolutely delicious! Who needs a corn dog when you can have a prawn dawg.
We had the chicken skewers, which were tasty. It had a sticky yakitori glaze with spring onions.
The grilled chicken thigh was cute. It was little and moist and had crispy skin.
The black pig gyoza’s were amazing. The skin of the dumplings were thin and soft and crispy pan-fried on the outside. And the filling was sensational. Pork, soy, chilli, ginger, full of flavour and served with a sesame dipping sauce. Loved them.
I love the nori taco, it’s such a great idea. The lightly battered deep-fried nori acts as the perfect taco. It’s flexible and holds its shape when you bite it (like it doesn’t crack and fall apart). It’s filled with sushi rice, grilled salmon belly (soft and flaking apart), spicy napa cabbage, Japanese mayo and chilli oil. So clever I was impressed. They had these nori tacos at the night noodle market last year, which is where i first tried it. Delish!
The all popular Miyagi fried chicken (MFC) is delicious. Miyagi’s secret spices make this chicken finger lickin’ good. It’s served with kewpie mayo and the delicious deep-fried goodness makes it crunchy on the outside and juicy in the middle.
The tuna tataki pizza was fresh and had really clean flavours. The base was spiced flat bread, which was thin and crispy and covered with a citrusy yuzu caesar cream. The toppings were sliced thinly and placed on top. Rare seared tuna, heirloom tomatoes and shaved jalepenos. It had nice textures and fresh flavours.
The pumpkin toast was soft and cake-like. There were thick shards of honeycomb, white chocolate and pumpkin ganache, a sweet and spiced pumpkin ice-cream which had a lovely flavour and a fresh yoghurt sorbet, which was light and fresh and helped cut through the sweet elements.
For dessert we tried the doughnut balls w classic apple cinnamon jam. Yum! The doughnuts were crunchy on the outside and fluffy in the middle. And that apple cinnamon jam was scrumptious. You can opt for hot chocolate sauce if you prefer. It also comes with two ice-creams, pistachio and gingerbread. They were nice and creamy and the ginger flavour in the gingerbread ice-cream was quite strong which was great.
Mr. Miyagi is a great place to catch up with friends for dinner and drinks. It’s got a classy but relaxed atmosphere and the staff are nice and friendly. The food is innovative and leaves you inspired.
I heart Mr. Miyagi!
Address: 99 Chapel Street, Windsor VIC 3181
Phone: 03 9529 5999
Trading Hours: Tue-Sun: 5.30pm-11pm (dinner only)
We had heard the legend of the ramen burger, the tale of a burger with no bun. According to the story, the bun is replaced with golden patties made entirely out of egg noodles. We had seen and eaten them only in our imaginations and we knew in our heart it was our duty, nay, our destiny, to try these ramen burgers for ourselves. Plus it was dinner time so this all worked out swimmingly.
The first ramen burger in Melbourne was created at Shizuku, so that’s where we went. There were two options. Both of which are served with a bowl of miso soup (an especially delicious miso btw). I ordered the candied pork belly with plum and prune sauce and kewpie mayo which was amazing.
My brother ordered the veg option, the miso-glazed eggplant with sweet miso jam. Both were yum. The ramen is packed tight to form the patty so you loose the bounciness of the noodle. I imagined the outer part of the ramen patty to be crispier and softer towards the center but the whole patty was the same soft texture throughout. It was still really yummy though and its fun to eat a bowl of noodles in a hand held motion.
We tried the chargrilled rolled pork belly which was absolutely delicious. It looked amazing and tasted even better. The thin slices of pork and julienned cucumber made the dish delicate. It was topped with cha shu sauce (sort of like Chinese char siu) which made the dish stand out with the simple and stunning flavours.
The Hiroshima crumbed oysters were also delicious. Piping hot oysters, crumbed with panko, deep-fried then placed back in their individual shells, oh so cute. They sat beside a fresh salad with kewpie mayo and a dark sweet sauce (I think it was oyster sauce –which would seem fitting). Or it could be the same sauce as in the ramen burger, the plum and prune. Either way, the point i’m making is the sauce was yummy.
The wasabi prawns were incredible. So delicious! We got the wasabi mayo on the side because my mum feared that it would be too hot but it wasn’t. It was just right. The prawns were cooked perfectly, the tempura batter was light and fluffy, and the wasabi-mayo ratio was perfection. I loved these so much.
To finish our meal we had the green tea ice cream with a Japanese black sugar fusion melt (which tasted like molasses), dusted with soy bean powder. It tasted just like green tea. The black sugar melt was a little bitter but it was a refreshing finish to our meal.
They had heaps of really interesting and imaginative dishes on the menu but we couldn’t order everything and we had already eaten to our stomachs capacity. I definitely want to go back. They had these cheesy nori snacks on the menu which was tasty cheese wrapped in seaweed, deep fried and sprinkled w seven-spice chilli. Sounds interesting huh. They also have caramalised lotus salad, karaage popcorn chicken with secret batter and a range of gyozas yum!
The décor was simple and stylish. The lights looked like lots of cables emerging from the ceiling with these crafty designer lights hanging from the cables. They looked like beautiful flowers.
I heart Shizuku!
Address: 309 Victoria Street, Abbotsford
Phone: 03 9995 8180
Trading Hours: Mon-Sun: 11.30am-2.30pm (Lunch), 5.30pm-til late (Dinner)