Tag Archives: Pyrmont

Sushi Omakase at Sokyo, Pyrmont

Sushi is one of my all-time favourite foods ever. I will happily eat any kind of sushi – be it takeaway sushi rolls, $3 sushi train plates, or individually crafted sushi at a restaurant. But for something that seems as simple as a piece of raw fish on top of rice, there can be such a vast difference in quality, which mainly comes down to the ingredients, and the skill of the sushi chef.

There’s a good reason that becoming a sushi chef takes years of training, and it’s because sushi is all about the details. What kind of rice do you use? How much pressure do you apply to the rice? What kind of fish? How do you slice or cut the fish? Do you add any garnishes to the fish? A trained sushi chef will know exactly how to answer these questions, and know how to use their creativity to make the best use of seasonal and local ingredients in their sushi.

Chef Takashi Sano
Chef Takashi Sano

One of the best ways to experience this is to book yourself in for a sushi omakase. Omakase means “I’ll leave it up to you”, and you’ll have to place your trust in the sushi chef to know what’s best. The sushi omakase at Sokyo is hands down the best sushi in Sydney (in my opinion), and that is mainly down to Chef Takashi Sano (ex-Tetsuya and Koi) whose sushi skills are unparalleled in Sydney.

I’ve had the sushi omakase at Sokyo twice now, and been blown away every time. So much so that I don’t even know what to say about it (hence why this blog post has been so delayed) except that if you love sushi, you have to go and try it for yourself. It’s not easy to get a booking as the omakase is only available on weeknights for a limited number of people, but this is so Sano-san can dedicate his full attention to each omakase customer for the night.

Snapper with snapper skin, myoga and yuzu
Cooked alfonsino in sweet soy

The following photos of the food are a mix of the two omakase menus we had at Sokyo. Both times we started with some small dishes which varied depending on what was seasonal. On our first visit, we had cooked dishes of snapper and alfonsino with sweet soy sauce, whereas on our second visit, our starters were raw scampi sashimi and melt in the mouth chopped tuna belly with caviar.

Scampi sashimi with yuzu and white soy

Otoro tuna belly with caviar
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LuMi Bar & Dining, Pyrmont

Since opening late in 2014, LuMi Bar & Dining has been on my radar for a while. I’d seen lots of photos on Instagram and heard about the awesome pasta dishes, so when my birthday rolled around earlier this year (yes, this is a very delayed post!), I requested to have my birthday dinner at LuMi.

The cuisine is a unique blend of Japanese and Italian influences, brought on by head chef Federico Zanellato’s training both at Ryugin in Tokyo and Ormeggio at the Spit. There is an option of an a la carte menu, but we decided to go with the 8 course tasting menu which was only $95pp.

Menu

The restaurant is located where the old Ripples at Sydney Wharf used to be – right on the pier overlooking Pyrmont Bay and facing Metcalfe park. The glass walls of the restaurant let in lots of natural light during the day, but be warned that it does get quite dark at night so apologies for the declining photo quality as the night goes on!

Snacks – cheese tarlet and corn; cos lettuce, pistachio, tomato, miso; potato and rosemary foccacia; rice chips salt and vinegar

We start with a plate of four snacks which are perfect mouthfuls to whet the appetite. My favourite was the cheese tartlet with corn – a classic flavour combination. The rice chips with salt and vinegar were also interesting wafer-like rice paper sheets that melted in the mouth, just leaving the salt and vinegar flavour behind.

Cos lettuce, pistachio, tomato, miso
Cheese tartlet and corn

Chawanmushi
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Fat Noodle, Pyrmont

One of the great things about blogging is that it takes me to people and places I probably never would have gone otherwise. Tucked away in a corner of The Star’s casino floor is Luke Nguyen’s Fat Noodle, and tonight I was lucky enough to be dining with the man himself while we sampled some of their most popular dishes.

Don’t be put off by the fact that it’s actually in the casino. It may be surrounded by the bright and flashing lights of the pokies machines and cheering punters at the Baccarat tables, but the food is spot on and the prices are very reasonable. Luke tells us that the dishes at his Fat Noodle restaurant are some of the chefs’ favourite hawker style foods found in South East Asia. The menu isn’t limited to a particular region, but spans Vietnam, China, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand to bring you favourites like pho, fried rice, char kway teow, laksa and pad thai.

Roasted duck and enoki Vietnamese rice paper rolls – $13

The menu is broken up into small plates, rice dishes, noodle dishes and wok dishes. We start with some small plates including these roasted duck and enoki rice paper rolls, which had plump and meaty pieces of roast duck (skin on, of course) inside the rice paper rolls, with delicate little enoki mushrooms sticking out of the ends. The rolls were served with a sweet and nutty hoisin and peanut dipping sauce, with crushed nuts sprinkled on top for texture.

Tasmanian oysters – $13

The Tasmanian oysters were an absolute treat, served raw and freshly shucked in the shell. The shallot dressing on top of the oysters was surprisingly sweet and the chopped purple perilla leaves provided a fresh flavour.

Seared scallops – $14
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Bistro 80, Pyrmont

With so many new big-ticket, fine dining restaurants opening at The Star, and a casino floor filled with poker machines, roulette and blackjack, it’s easy to think that a night at The Star will burn a hole in your wallet. A visit to Bistro 80 proved that this doesn’t have to be the case.

Inside Bistro 80

Still retaining some of the decor from its predecessor, Sean’s Kitchen, Bistro 80 is now headed up by Paul Gaspa serving simple, bistro-style dishes at prices that won’t make your jaw drop.

Remy's Delight - $16

It also helps that there is a bar right next door which means there is no excuse to order a pre-dinner cocktail! I opt for the Remy’s Delight, mainly because I see that there is moscato in it heh. The four types of liquor in this cocktail ensures that it packs a punch but aside from the slight burning, the flavour is citrussy and refreshing from the lime and passionfruit.

Tequila Smash - $14

Tequila-lover Sir D can’t got past the Tequila Smash, which is made using reposado (aged) tequila, vanilla and cinnamon syrup and smashed seasonal fruits. Tonight’s fruits are an interesting combination of kiwifruit and blood orange.

The Ocean Shelf

At Bistro 80, there is the option of ordering fresh seafood from “The Ocean Shelf”, some of which is proudly displayed on ice in front of the open kitchen. It includes lobsters, king prawns, moreton bay bugs, Alaskan king crab and oysters, however we forego the ocean’s offerings in favour of something a little more meaty.

Flavours of Jamon - $40

We choose two starters to share amongst us, beginning with a charcuterie platter containing three types of Iberico jamon plus pickled onions and cornichons. Even Sir D, who normally doesn’t enjoy charcuterie, admits that the paper-thin slices of jamon which are ribboned with fat are delicious.

Confit duck salad - $18
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