food, Japanese, Melbourne

Japanese meets contemporary dining – Nobu, Melbourne

On a recent trip to Melby, I insisted that we visit Nobu as there was so much hype surrounding this place. Mind you, I haven’t even been to Sydney’s Sokyo so I’d like to compare resto’s in the near future. Sake Restaurant & Bar and Yuki’s at Quay have also caught my eyes (aka stomach).

We were pretty early, considering dinner starts at 6pm and we were invited to the bar, fixated by the ingenious cocktail labels and foreign sake. After waiting what seemed like a long time we were escorted downstairs to the main dining area only to be greeted by caucasians poorly expressing ‘Irasshaimase,’ (Welcome in Jap). Surely, this high end restaurant could’ve hired individuals remotely japanese or of asian descent? It would have been more authentic. Or else, ditch the Irasshaimase because it’s tacky!
I felt that downstairs was exceptionally dim, blasted with the music… unable to converse or take good lighting photos. :( We chose to ignore the three course menu’s and go for the freedom of picking our own dishes! I recommend this option as the courses don’t contain the best dishes that well represent Nobu.

Yellowtail Sashimi with Jalapeño $23
Rating: ☻☻☻☻☻

First dish, first impression: holy f*ck, I am in love! The thinly sliced pieces of raw fish melted in the mouth, immersed with a light soy sauce dressing and slices of chili Jalapeños just simply made me weak in the knees. I am pretty sure I gobbled up the rest of it before the boy could…. Oops

Hokusetsu Onigoroshi ‘Devil Killer’ (Bamboo) $34

To complete the full Japanese dining experience, the boy ordered some sake. It is to be savoured slowly in correlation with the dishes. This heightens the taste and gastronomical experience… the last shot was aged 10 years old and it was a killer!

New Style Sashimi – Salmon $21.5
Rating: ☻☻☻☻☻

A Jap meal is incomplete without the salmon! I chose to taste this alleged new-style sashimi as it was truly intriguing, supposedly the components of this dish is dressed with chive, ginger and white sesame seed before a dousing of hot olive and sesame oil with a separate soy/yuzu dressing. I also noticed that the fish was half raw, half cooked — a technique that has been well executed as the flavours combined were phenomenal in my mouth and the dressing, wiped clean. So far, so good.

Beef Tataki w Ponzu and Garlic Chips $28
Rating: ☻☻☻☻☺

Upon research, this dish was repetitive in my findings, which was surely a must try. Drenched in ponzu is stunningly beef tataki, chargrilled with minced onion and fried garlic flakes. Excellent value for money, it contains numerous slices which were more than enough for two people. The components worked really well although the heavy tanginess of the ponzu was off-putting for my palate towards the end. The lemon-y relish is meant to slightly cook the beef tataki through and I thought a clever touch for the progression of this dish. This is perhaps the boy’s favourite!

Crispy Oysters w Creamy Wasabi and Caviar $12
Rating: ☻☻☻☻☻

I know, I know it’s a ridiculous price for two tiny oysters encased in a crunchy shell but it was so damn tasty! Upon the first bite, there is a crunch and there is steam transmitting from the juicy oysters that are contained inside. The contrast of the both textures worked superbly, along with the wasabi mayo and caviar. I just wish I had more /sigh.

Black Miso Cod $49

Ooooooh last but not least, the infamous signatory Miso cod. Imported from Japan, it is carefully marinated in a miso-based paste for several days before roasting. In fact, this has been my first Miso cod tasting and quite memorable, as this exquisite fish exhibited a fine flakey texture and the elastic/gelatinous skin is enhanced by the flavours of the miso marinade. It is a melt-in-your-mouth experience and becomes overwhelming, but there’s radish to the rescue. I look forward to trying other restaurant’s interpretation of the Miso cod!

Overall, the boy and I enjoyed ourselves at Nobu with our expectations superseded and tummy’s satisfied. If we are ever in Melbourne, we would definitely come back for a visit as the food is exceptional. The bill didn’t hurt as much as it came to under $200 :)


Where? Riverside at Crown Melbourne, 8 Whiteman Street
Southbank, VIC, 3006
Mon – Thurs lunch: 12pm-2:30
Fri – Sun lunch: 12pm – 3:00pm
Sun – Thurs dinner: 6pm-10:30pm
Fri – Sat dinner: 6pm-11pm
Mon – Sun bar: 12pm-1am

Best to make reservations a week beforehand for dinner.

Nobu on Urbanspoon


11 thoughts on “Japanese meets contemporary dining – Nobu, Melbourne

  1. Tina @ bitemeshowme says:

    love miso cod – the flavour works really well. I’ve tried it at both nobu and sokyo and both do a fab rendition! :)

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