Sunday, 21 July 2013

Yebisu Izakaya in Regents Place

Yebisu Izakaya has joined the little alley of Japanese restaurants in Regents Place. Where once Azuma stood, Yebisu now stands. No longer black and mysterious, the restaurant has been revamped and lit up, with graffiti on their open brick walls, and an external eating area.

The menu is reminiscent of izakayas in Japan, simple foods and an extensive alcoholic drinks menu.

What is really interesting about their dishes is that many items are not often seen in other izakayas around Sydney but that are largely common in Japan. For example their hokke, which is a dish of grilled atka mackerel, is usually eaten with grated radish and a drizzle of soy sauce over the fish.

The beef guts hot pot is a traditional dish from Fukuoka, called motsunabe. For those that like eating intestines, this is a really tasty dish. It comes accompanied with cabbages and garlic chives.  

You can choose individual skewers or for large groups, it may be easier to order a mix plate. The mixed plate comes with pairs of skewers and each plate varies.

There are three $5 beers to choose from, along with other pricier beers, a number of sakes, liquors, and a long list of sweet and colourful mixed drinks. The alcohol cart is a neat concept, it is entertaining and the waiters are happy to explain to you the differences between each sake.

Yebisu Izakaya is true to its izakaya name. It is a good representation of the cheap izakaya drinking taverns in Japan, however at a premium price in Sydney. The food is good, the service is good, the location is convenient and atmosphere is casual and comfortable.

The higher price tag is expected, as cheap food in Sydney seems to be scarce and a drink costs as much as a meal. Though whether you think it is worth the premium price is a subjective matter, most would agree Yebisu is pretty good. What would make it even better would be an all-you-can-drink set with a fixed food menu that characterise izakayas in Japan. But our nanny state may have something to say about that.

The restaurant seats around 50 people comfortably. But be sure to book ahead because the lines can get long and the patrons in the restaurant are in no rush to leave.

Beef tongue

Duck loin

Beef tataki

Chicken nonkotsu

Tofu and seaweed salad

Mixed skewers platter


Yebisu Izakaya on Urbanspoon