Friday, 4 January 2013

Nishiki, Crows Nest

270 Pacific Highway Crows Nest NSW 2065
+61 2 8021 6688
7 days 6pm-10pm

After trying numerous Japanese BBQ places around Sydney, I think Nishiki is probably my favourite. The last time I was here, I got a bit too excited when the food arrived and dove right into the food and cooking the meat on the grill so totally did not get a chance to take photos. This time though, I made sure to.

We went for the Gourmet Buffet ($59.80/person). I also washed down my delicious meal with Asahi on tap. What better accompaniment to bbq meat than a fantastic cold beer eh?

Nishiki has the nicest ambiance of all the Japanese BBQ restaurants. It is also the least smoky and you don't leave the restaurant smelling of BBQ and charcoal.

Partly why I like Nishiki so much is because of all the sides available. A lot of the Japanese BBQ restaurants really only offer you BBQ meat and just eating BBQ meat for the entire meal is a tad boring.

Oysters: ponzu + miso sauces
The oysters are limited to 2 per person but they were fresh and tasty. I think I still prefer the ponzu sauce.

Salmon + Kingfish Sashimi
The sashimi wasn't sliced authentically - they were very thin and tiny. Sashimi slices should be a lot thicker. But hey, it's a buffet and you just have to work with it right? The sashimi was fresh, and that's the more important thing so no gripes really. Enjoyable and a nice change to the flavour, heat and texture of the bbq meat.

Sushi of the day: Sausage Sushi
So I asked the waiter what was the "Sushi of the day" He wasn't sure and ran off to the kitchen to ask. He came back with "sausage sushi" We shrugged our shoulders and thought why not try some? We ordered 2 pieces each and this plate came out. Yep, they were definitely literal on this one. When they said "sausage sushi" they seriously meant it.

One of my dining companions immediately exclaimed she wasn't having any. Since it was before me, I thought it doesn't hurt to try one right? What can I say, it tasted exactly liked it looked - sausage wrapped in rice. My other dining companion who tried one verified my thoughts. We ended up all trying one piece each. It wasn't bad per se, it was... sausage sushi.

Aburi Salmon Nigiri
The aburi salmon nigiri was quite tasty but I thought it probably could have been seared a tad more.

Takoyaki (octopus deep fried in batter topped w/ mayo and tonkatsu sauce): tasted as taloyaki usually tastes - quite enjoyable.

Nagoya Chicken
Nagoya Chicken: chicken wings deep fried w/ a tasty sauce. What more can I say? We loved this dish.

Namuru: side dish of cold vegetables. This one includes preserved mushrooms, boiled spinach, bean sprouts and pickled radish. I quite enjoy this side of vegetables and it makes me feel slightly healthier.

We also ordered the lettuce leaves wrap - wrap up the bbq meat in the lettuce leaves. Feel more healthier, have some more vegetables. Balance out all the meat kinda vibe.

Gyoza: pan fried dumplings. I know this plate of gyoza did not look authentic. It didn't taste authentic either. It wasn't pan-fried very well and the filling was very mediocre. My dining companions weren't interested in this dish at all. For some reason, I kind of liked these sub-par un-authentic gyoza and finished off most of the plate myself.

The Meat!
The Meat: wagyu rib meat, wagyu rump, wagyu outside skirt, wagyu flap meat, wagyu oyster blade, beef liver

We just ordered a serving of each type. The quality of the meat here is really quite good and it was very delicious. The meat melted in your mouth, the marinated flavours were just right. It really hit the spot.

Ox Tongue
And of course, one of everyone's favourite BBQ meat: ox tongue

Shot of the Grill
This was a shot of the grill when we were just starting out. Clearly I was too busy eating and grilling to take any more grill pics :p

Vegetables for the Grill
Vegetables: mushrooms, asparagus, onion, cabbage

Vegetables aren't nearly as exciting on the grill as meat but for the sake of a somewhat slightly more balanced meal, we do order some.

We finished our meal with some green-tea ice cream each. The green tea ice cream from this place is really good. They have a heavy matcha (green tea powder) ratio mixed in so the ice cream is quite full of green tea flavour which is great.

A thoroughly enjoyable meal. Whenever I feel like Japanese BBQ, I now think of Nishiki.

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