Category Archives: Food

Momofuku

shortrib
Deep-fried short rib with snails and asparagus, definitely my fave dish of the night.

momofukudessert
Anise & chervil meringue on a bed of corn custard.

jess_me
Jess and I, wasted, seated right in the middle on the bench overlooking the kitchen, best seats in the house!

Jess wanted to get dressed up one last time before she goes overseas on her epic adventure, so she booked us in to Momofuku for an amazing meal. I’d been once before back in 2012, but last time I didn’t do the beverage pairing. This time we went for the full pairing and my God we got trashed! SO much booze, so awesome! The menu was completely different to last time too, the chefs as well, but that same David Chang iPod playlist was in full force with AC/DC blasting from the speakers.

Jess took photos of all the food, and booze. I took some notes, but my notes got worse as the night rolled on (haha). I’m sure her blog post will be much more comprehensive than mine, look out for it on her blog soon.

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Nanami’s Latest Piece

nanami_heartstrings
Caught up with Nana-Chan today. She’s finished a piece she started a while back so I got to have a good look at it.

heart
As always, you’ve really got to check out her work in real life. The amount of details she manages to capture always surprises me.

hands
This time around she’s used 3D ink for the string in this piece, again, just has to be seen in real life.

doublebay
We then ducked out for a bite at Australian 18 Footers. her Dad’s old Yacht Club in Double Bay. Such a beautiful day for fish and chips!
nana
Nana, Paul was with us too.

calamari
Calamari.

fishandchips
I ordered Fish & Chips! Yew!

dock
Soon after I took this pic a charter fishing boat anchored up and a big group of drunken yobbos all walked off the boat with huge King Fish. All I could think about was SASHIMI!!!!!!!!!

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Tokyo – Day 11

Sukiyabashi-Jiro-Roppongi-Hills
Saving the best for last. I had a date with Mimi at Sukiyabashi Jiro Roppongi Hills!

A few months back I decided on going to Jiro’s son Takashi Ono’s Roppongi Hills restaurant instead of Jiro’s in Ginza. Why? Well the news is that Jiro’s in Ginza is all business. You have to learn the right etiquette for eating the sushi otherwise you’ll be frowned upon, and there’s no talking, no photography and you have to be in and out quite quickly too.

Mimi tried so hard to get a booking a month or so ago, and it was looking pretty grim, but on her last attempt to call she got through! Again, just amazing how much luck I’ve got!

I read that Jiro’s son’s restaurant was way more relaxed, and dead set, it was such an amazing experience and the best sashimi and sushi I have ever had in my life. Takashi-san ran us through every dish (was great having Mimi as a translator!). Also noteworthy, they picked up that I was left handed and all my dishes were served left handed (mirror opposite to Mimi’s). We were “mmmming” so much! Heaven, sushi heaven!

tea
The green tea (which was amazing) was topped up constantly throughout the meal.

clam_flounder
We opted to go half sashimi, and half sushi for our set menu. First up, delicious flounder fin and clam.

jiro_sashimi_mackerel
This mackerel was amazing, so next level. Perfect texture. I can’t get over it.

bonnito_jiro_sushi
Smoked bonito was a taste explosion. It was had 2 ways, first straight with dipping sauce below.

sauce
Dipping sauce for bonito.

jiro_sushi_smoked_wrap
Second 2 pieces you used ginger and wrapped it up in a leaf. Amazeballs!

jiro_sushi_3
Sole fish.

jiro_sushi_squid
Squid, so creamy!

jiro_sushi_scallop
Giant clam. It was, for a better word, amazing!

jiro_sushi_tuna1
Tuna, this was epic.

jiro_sushi_fatty_tuna
And just when we thought it couldn’t get any better, fatty tuna, which was just too good and had us both vocally expressing ourselves, and shaking our heads in disbelief.

jiro_sushi_sardine
Sardine, but not at all salty or fishy.

jiro_sushi_1
The dishes came up fast, and we were encouraged to eat them (with our hands) as soon as they landed on our plates.

horse-head-jiro-sushi
Horse mackerel was one of our fave dishes.

jiro
Takashi Ono, second son of the world-famous sushi master, Jiro Ono. Takashi-san spoke to us quite a lot, if Mimi wasn’t with me he probably would not have (he did not speak to the other foreigners much at all but spoke and joked with one of the locals a fair bit).

jiro_sushi_roe
Never had roe so god. Such amazing popping and bursting with liquid textures.

jiro_sushi_prawn
Prawn for me.

jiro_prawntailchop_ladiesonly
Prawn for Mimi. Chopped off tail, for ladies only!

urchin
Urchin, which I don’t usually love, but I loved this. It literally melted in your mouth.

eel
Sea eel, best eel I’ve ever had no doubt!

egg
If you’ve seen Jiro Dreams of Sushi, the movie, you’d know what goes into this amazing egg dish which finished off our meal.

mimi_egg
Chopped in 2 for ladies only!

mimi_jiro_justinfox
Takashi-san said ‘thank you’ to me in both Chinese and Indonesian, he see’s a lot of tourists and knows how to say thanks in over 40 languages. He was more than happy to have a small chat afterwards, and also asked if we wanted a photo with him.

sand
With happy bellies, hearts and minds, Mimi and I checked out the Mori Art Museum. This piece was beautiful, black sand pouring out like an hour glass, set to a moody soundtrack.

themovinggarden
Taiwan-born artist Lee Mingwei’s show was on and it was the best interactive art show I’ve seen in ages. This piece ‘The Moving Garden’ encouraged visitors to take a flower and then give it to a stranger you pass by on the way home.

mimi_flower
I gave my flower to Mimi though, apologies Lee!

boxes
Shoes off, we stepped up to a platform littered with tied up wooden boxes.

mimi_open_box
We were encouraged to open them up and find items of clothing from Lee’s childhood.

open-boxes-me
Under each lid, stories associated with each piece. Very sweet.

sandart
This huge piece on the floor was made by different coloured sand. The audience is dared to walk over the sand painting and deform the image, destroying the crazy man hours involved in making the sand painting in the first place.

letter-boxes
Loved this. The audience is encouraged to take their shoes off, enter and write letters that they had always meant to but had never taken time for. You can also read letters people have left, and if you put an address on the envelope the artist will send the letter for you when the exhibition closes.

viewtop
We then checked out the view from the top, that’s Tokyo Tower in the picture.

mimi_view
Was a beautiful day!

cremedelacreme
Back down to earth we tried some ice-cream treats from Crème de la Crème.

ellecafe
And bought a drink from the cute ELLE Café next door.

coldpressjuice
This almond milk drink was such a perfect choice.

spider
We found a place to sit and just and chill, was so great to catch up with Mimi. I’ve missed her terribly (and I’m going to miss her even more when I return home).

altered-vehicles-not-permitted
Spotted out the front of a carpark in Roppongi Hills.

festival
Later that night. A festival in and around Shinjuku station.

blackburger
From the highs of Jiro to the absolute low. The Burger King Black Burger just came out in Japan, we had to try it, right?! Visually trippy, but taste wise it was just AOK.

beer
We then hit up HUB British Pub in Shinjuku.

pub
Krysti and I managed to convince a couple of Japanese girls to join our table so that they could practise their English and we could practise our (horrible) Japanese!

itsasign
It’s a sign! We got pretty tanked in there, and we were the last group left when they kicked us out to close.

newrecruits
New Acquired Taste recruits!

kisskiss
Kiss kiss! Krysti and I, wasted!

feel
We hit the Golden Gai, where anything goes. The Japanese girls were infatuated with Krysti’s boobs! When Krysti gave them the go ahead, they couldn’t keep their hands off!!!

pervert
So much grabbing action.

pillow
Such epic lols!

krystis-go
Then it was Krysti’s turn to feel their boobs!

lol
Such a rad night out.

tattoo
Kaori’s tattoo.

wasted
Kaori, Miwa and me.

kebab
We stumbled back to the hotel, kebabs even!!!

vendingmachinedrinks
And we went a bit silly on the vending machines to prepare for tomorrow’s nasty hang over! What a night!

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Tokyo – Day 8

up-garage
We’ve been doing SO much that Tokyo took a toll on us again today, and we slept in until lunch time, but we all managed to get out of bed and catch a train out to Kumagaya to check out the closest Up Garage (since they were shut yesterday).

seats
We got there without issues thanks to Alexi’s directions. A sleepy little suburb with a relaxed vibe. The shop instantly blew us all away. 80% second hand goods and some new stuff too. The seats were really well priced and had us all wishing we had something like this back home.

wheels-up-garage
So many awesome wheels. All reasonably priced too!

stretched
Spotted this guy leaving, what a stretch!!!

fishingtime
We got back in time for an epic dinner at Zauo in Shinjuku, a restaurant where you catch your own fish!!! We had a private booth, they serve a set menu (and the freshest most dark red tuna I’ve ever had), unlimited beer, sake and plum wine and when you’re tanked, you can go fishing!

mimi_me_cray
Mimi and I both caught crayfish!

snapper
The boys did well with a couple of snapper and a flounder too!

fishing-boat
I’m on a boat. Such a mad concept, everyone in there was having a blast!

salt-fish
This snapper came out in a casing of hard salt, which you lit, then broke with a hammer to eat the fish inside. Absolutely delish!

sake-shots
Sake shots for the 2 guys who failed to catch anything, haha!

angelo-fish-eye
I told Angelo the eye was the best bit (I lied), so he ate it. I rewarded him with letting him eat the cheek though, which is the best bit!

p-ride
Matty’s “Aussie Pride” tattoo has bad letter spacing. To me it reads: “P ride”.

fixing
I thought I’d fix it.

aussie_pride_fixed
MUCH BETTER!!!

crayfish
Crayfish was unreal! Such a mad night, what a great concept, and such great company! A trip to the Golden Gai (again) will see us in bad shape tomorrow morning, but hey! YOLO!!!

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Family Lunch at Red Lantern on Riley

lukenguyen_lely
Chef Luke Nguyen and Lely the B’Day girl.

pauline-nguyen_lelybernard
Co-owner of Red Lantern (and Luke’s sister) Pauline Nguyen, Lely and her husband Bernard.

luke-nguyen_sisters
The sisters and Luke (that’s my mum on the far right!).

candynippletassles
My relos are always pushing it with the dirty jokes. Their heads are in the gutter I swear! Lely’s pressie, some edible nipple tassels!

Celebrated my Aunt Lely’s B’Day today at Red Lantern on Riley. My family are very used to choosing where to eat, but for the first time I felt like I got a word in and I’m glad I did as they all absolutely loved the food, and the company too as both Luke and Pauline Nguyen were in the house!

My 3rd time eating there now, and I am still in awe of how amazing the food is (yes, the beef, oh my fucking god the beef!!!).

For more info, visit: http://www.redlantern.com.au/riley

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Red Lantern VIP

VIP
Yeah you know me!

A while back the Zen crew feasted like Kings at Red Lantern on Riley. The food was mind blowing! We’ve been in touch ever since and we’ve managed to secure a few ZEN GARAGE VIP CARDS to hand out which get you a massive 20% off your meal!!!

What a mad collab! I’m stoked. All orders from our online shop will get a card as of today until they run out!

Check out our review of Red Lantern on Zen Blog.

PS: Could not resist giving the card a spin last night, and had the best catch up with Felix and Di for dinner at Red Lantern on Riley last night. The food was EPIC. The beef, OMFG the beef.

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Fuku

sashimi
Sashimi. Can’t resist.

smoke1
What I came for. Saikyo miso black cod. LOVED the presentation of having the wrapped cedar (which was alight) opened up at the table.

smoke2
Flesh was so soft, smokey, sweet and delish!

pork
Who isn’t a sucker for crackling?!

duck
Duck dish was great too.

Watch how you pronounce it! Fuku is across from Din Tai Fung at World Square, it’s been there a while, and to be honest, it’s one of those restaurants I’d usually avoid. Not exactly sure why, maybe it’s the way their menu looks (photos, bad layout, a bit cheap), maybe it’s the venue (it’s way too big, the rent must be nuts), maybe it’s the staff (I noted many of them were not Japanese), maybe it’s a combination of things… in any case we ate there last night as I really wanted to try their Akita Sugatayaki, traditional Japanese smoked grill wrapped in cedar wood.

All in all it was a good night, a bit of Sake, a sneaky Margarita, great company and some decent food (but a bit too pricey for what it was IMHO).

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Lao Village

lao
Old school cool, look for the screen door.

inside
Easy like a Sunday morning.

feast
What a feast!

Today Jess took me out West to feast at Lao Village Restaurant in Fairfield. Loved all of it, including the whack decor. Highly recommend!

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Hakata-Maru Ramen

hakatamaru

whiteramen
I went for the White Tonkotsu.

redramen
Jess went for the Red Tonkotsu.

Jess has a Japanese friend who introduced her and I to Hakata-Maru Ramen last weekend. So good as I’d been craving Ramen for a week! They’re unfortunately located at the Market City Food Court, that aside I went for the White Tonkotsu. The soup was delicious and I absolutely smashed it, so strong eaters will definitely be wanting 2 serves!

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The Sparrow’s Mill

kfc1
Choices choices. I love KFC!

kfc2
Winner winner. Smaller pieces than most, super crunchy and not at all greasy.

kfc3
One of my fave things about eating Korean is the sides, especially the potato noodles. 

kfc4
Perfect for this cold weather and I have a thing for subtle dishes.

kfc5
Seafood pancake wasn’t a great choice, bit greasy and of-course the seafood wasn’t fresh.

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