The Star, 80 Pyrmont St Pyrmont NSW 2009
+61 2 9657 9161
"Modern Japanese with a twist: served in the traditional Kaiseki style (multi-course Japanese dinner) ... a blend of bold and complex flavours..."
As you are seated, the waiter offers you drinks - we went for the green tea. The genmai sencha (green tea with puffed rice) is presented in a very heavy but traditional Japanese looking pot.
As per the introduction, Sokyo is a multi-course Japanese dining experience - the menu is broken down into sections for each course: Sashimi, Tempura, Robata, Essential Dishes and Sushi.
|Moreton Bay Bug Sashimi $26|
I decided to be a bit more adventurous in my ordering tonight so went for the Moreton Bay Bug Sashimi instead of the Seared Salmon Sashimi. Although it was fresh and the texture and flavours were interesting, I found this dish to be too salty.
|Hokkaido Scallop Yuzu Honey ($16)|
I generally quite like scallop sashimi or lightly seared scallop so I thought why not try out Sokyo's take on scallop sashimi? Yuzu is a citrus fruit found in East Asia and commonly used in Japanese cuisine - usually to make ponzu sauce. Today, the tartness of the yuzu served with the honey was a very interesting combination. Like the Moreton Bay Bug Sashimi however, I found this dish to be too salty as well - it was somehow sour and salty at the same time.
Neither my dining companion or I felt like tempura tonight - and I'm sure any day you skip deep fried food is a good day health wise, so on we went to robata.
Think of Robata like barbeque: skewered food grilled on charcoal. How can you go wrong really?
|Kurobuta Pork Belly Robata $14|
At first glance, the pork belly skewers looked like layers of pork lean meat sandwiched between layers of fat. I'm sure our arteries breathed a sigh of relief when the "white layers of pork fat" turned out to be white radish. This was absolutely delicious. But really, how can you go wrong with grilled pork belly? Mmm. And everyone knows anything cooked on skewers just makes it that much more awesome. The pork belly was just right in terms of flavour and I was glad it wasn't overly salty like the sashimi earlier.
|Beef Robata $15|
Grilled beef short rib on skewers with bbq teriyaki sauce. Need I say more? This was very delicious. The caramelized eschallots were quite good too and I'm usually not a fan of onion. The bbq teriyaki sauce gave the beef a nice flavour without being overly salty.
|"Kobe Cuisine" Wagyu Tenderloin 200 grams $48|
This dish was so beautifully presented, it could have been mistaken for a dessert dish. The slices of beef were so tender and melt in your mouth good. I usually don't like wasabi but the wasabi butter that was melting its juices over the beef was not overpowering - I'm a wasabi wimp and even I could handle it. The pieces of pumpkin were good too. This dish was fantastic - the star of the show.
|Queensland Roll $21|
When I was ordering sushi, I thought to be a bit more adventurous than usual here. There was no "Wow" factor with the Queensland Roll. You can definitely taste the crab and avocado but really that's about it. It wasn't bad but it wasn't particularly interesting and didn't provide me with any special oompf. When I am paying more than double the price of what sushi usually goes for on the market, of course I am expecting a bit more to the dish.
|Scampi Nigiri $17|
The meal came to about $160 for 2. Overall, it was a very delicious meal and I definitely enjoyed it. The standouts were the wagyu tenderloin and the scampi. The robata was very good as well but like I mentioned before, grilled meat on skewers usually is good. The sashimi was far too salty and I wouldn't order any of the sashimi again. For the quality, presentation and attention to detail of the food, I found the price to be fair. Definitely worth giving Sokyo a shot if you get the chance.