Monday, January 14, 2013

Izakaya Den, Melbourne - Japanese Tapas

Looking through my pictures from Melbourne, I realised I've taken a lot of photos, majority of them being food..  So, please bear with me while I blog about them.

I think there will be loads of food blogging here while I'm in Australia, unless I can find more interesting things to distract myself ;)

On our first night in Melbourne (fresh from Singapore), we did a group meetup with a few of S's mates at this Japanese tapas in the city.  I have to say, like most of Melbourne's good bars which are well hidden, Izakaya Den was definitely hard to find, as we had people getting lost trying to find this place.  Thankfully there's people in the group who have actually been to this place.  I just followed them blindly! ;)

Izakaya Den
114 Russell St

Melbourne Victoria 3000
Area: Melbourne
You have to go down some steps to get to the restaurant.  The place is dimly lit and we were led past the bar till the end of the room where our large group of people settled down at a canteen like table and benches (brings me back to high school in Malaysia =) )

The dishes true to tapas style are small but delicious, so, you will have to order quite a bit to fill satisfied.  I have my favourites and I have a few which I weren't too keen on.  As the place is quite dimly lit, my pictures didn't turn out too well ;(

L - R:  Pickled veggies, Den Fried Chicken ($10) - crispy and quite nice,  Sweet Corn 'Kaki'-age ($7) - big and chunky, oily and sweet.  Not too sure I was too keen on deep fried corn.  I can't remember what the right dish is.  I thought they were big sized spring rolls.. but I can't remember now.
Kingfish Sashimi with Asian style dressing ($17) - Absolutely delicious.  So fresh and tasty.  I believe I tasted sesame oil 
Ox Tongue with Spring Onions ($15) - This is definitely the bees knees!! I was in orgasmic heaven when I had this.  Absolutely tasty and so tender.  I think we ordered a few of these!
Salmon Sashmi with yuzu vinaigrette ($16)

Poached duck breast with plum sauce (mushroom & pickles).  Was quite tasty
Kurobuta Pork Belly ($19) - Grilled and slightly too salty but still very tasty.  I made the mistake of dipping my already salty pork into the salt.  Whoops!
Gotzinger Berkshire Pork Sausages with seeded mustard ($14) - Not too keen as they taste like German sausage... and it's too weird for me as we are at a Japanese eatery.
Unfortunately, if I remembered correctly, we ordered more dishes than what I have taken photos of.  The dishes were small and we were hungry and people were eating too quickly and we had to order more.  After the 2nd lot of order came out, I was too busy fighting for food, that all thoughts of taking pictures went out the window =)

Price wise, I think it's quite steep but I guess it's now pretty average Melbourne standard and when you add a few glasses of alcohol, it really becomes an expensive night out.  Overall the food is fresh and tasty, but you really do need to order quite a few dishes if you were hungry like us.  But definitely a great place to hang out after work (especially on a Friday night), order a few dishes and have a few glasses of alcohol.  Great place to unwind to kickstart your weekend!

Izakaya Den on Urbanspoon