As a self confessed fair dinkum red meat lover, a degustation at the Ocean Room was always going to be interesting. Entering the restaurant I knew my tastebuds were in for something special. The chic architecture fused with an oriental feel symbolised exactly what I was about to eat – quintessential Japanese ingredients with a modern spin.
For your own sanity (and mine) I will not even try and take you on the full 12-course culinary journey. Instead … my top four dishes.
A delectable (yes, delectable) dish was the sashimi plate. Though individually the fish did not look aesthetically pleasing, chef Raita Noda’s presentation made me unable to resist. The fish changes daily but I had ocean trout, tuna and prawn which were pleasingly tender. The best part of Raita’s cooking is his ability to soften the powerful fishy taste that comes from, well, fish. Try the dish with a glass of Tupari Awatere Valley Sauvignon Blanc. A zesty fruit driven wine it really complements the sashimi.
I greatly enjoyed the Saikyo Miso Cod with signature grilled sweet miso cod fillet, ginger risotto and orange miso sauce. This exploded on the palate. A subtle taste of cod, mixed with sweetly sour orange miso sauce, coupled with creamy ginger risotto made for one happy diner. The contrast of sweet, sour and spicy flavors was a real hit and the cod was so tender that it melted in my mouth.
Dessert was a Nori & Shoyu Angel Cake with aged shoyu scented, vanilla and soy infused cream, soy caramel sauce, spiced vanilla ice-cream and caramelised banana. My tastebuds were awakened with a real velvety taste of the cake whilst also attacked by a spicy tang of the ice-cream. The caramelised banana was only made better by a top layer of fairy-floss like shreds.
I’m warning you now – it may take two to three hours so make sure you have some time up your sleeve.
Ground Level, Overseas Passenger Terminal, Circular Quay West, 02 9252 9585