Eat Drink Perth is an exciting time of the year, with restaurants, cafes and food vendors in and around Perth all putting on special menus, events and celebrations of all things edible or drinkable. I always throw myself into experiencing everything the month long festival has to offer, and can think of nothing better than literally eating and drinking my way through our beautiful city.
I recently was invited to attend the launch of Sushia’s Eat Drink Perth menu at Brookfield Place, joining other foodies for a long table dinner with some canapés and cheeky cocktails to kick things off. It’s a gorgeous venue, with low intimate lighting inside, aesthetically pleasing decor and a lovely alfresco area if you want to brave the gusts of winds that blow down the terrace.
It’s an upscale Japanese restaurant, with chefs that previously worked at Nobu. The menu offers both ala carte and omakase, providing something for everyone. I’ve eaten lunch there before, and was excited to try their special menu during our month of celebrating all things edible in Perth.
It was a hot night when we descended the stairs to the restaurant – after an extremely searing day, it was still grazing the 40 degree mark at 6pm. Eep! So starting off with the yuzu cocktail for me was a beautiful, contemporary and oh so refreshing commencement. Comprised of ice cold Ketel One vodka shaken with yuzu, honey, plum wine and lemon juice it was so satisfying, especially with the garnish of yamamomo, which is a Japanese mountain peach I have a bit of an obsession with after trying them at Nobu.
Someone please buy me a whole carton of these. Seriously, please do.
Canapes at the start of the night provided us with a little insight into some of the normal menu items which can be ordered. The pork gyoza ($15.00 for a small plate normally) was ethereally light and juicy, the filling with the meat, vegetable and balsamic teriyaki sauce delicious.
The pork tacos ($10.00 for two normally) are a nod to the chef’s Nobu heritage, crispy and savoury. The meat inside was slightly sweetened, soft and a nice contrast to the shell. I didn’t find the filling as interesting as the ones at Nobu (though they are half the price), nor as exciting. It might be unfair to compare, but for a dish based off one I’m quite familiar with I’m obviously going to draw comparisons.
The spiced edamame (normally $12.00) and crispy lotus chips (normally $8.00) were both an excellent way to complete our stand up canapés before heading over to the long table for dinner. I love edamame, and can spend all day shelling and munching away – these were a great variation with their generous hit of chilli. The lotus root chips were enjoyable, but really needed a touch more seasoning and also some kind of creamy sauce to dunk them in.
The Eat Drink Perth menu is $48 for three courses, or $60 to include a special cocktail. The first course we were served wasn’t part of the menu, but an added extra to enjoy!
And it was a great extra – a sashimi trio with a slice each of fresh salmon, hamachi jalapeño and gyu tataki. The kingfish (hamachi) with yuzu was the popular choice around the table, and it was delicate and light. The seared beef tataki was beautiful and punchy, thanks to the addition of ginger and garlic chips. This is definitely my kind of food, and I was happy to savour every bite.
With a glass of Chandon Brut from Yarra Valley, we welcomed the first official course of our Eat Drink Perth menu. A small serving of popcorn prawns were lightly battered with creamy jalapeño sauce and mixed salad.
Again this is another dish inspired by what I’ve tried at Nobu previously, and for me was the standout for the night. Sweet, juicy meat covered in a satisfyingly crunchy coating. The sauce was the perfect accompaniment, bringing a zing into each bite. My only complaint… there just wasn’t enough. I wanted more and more!
For our main, we tasted the robtayaki pork rib with sweet potato chips, garlic chips, ginger salsa and spicy momoko sauce. I found this dish a bit confusing as it’s not really what I would expect to find on a modern Japanese menu. It was tasty, but just didn’t quite match everything else we ate.
That being said, the pork rib was well cooked, sliding off the bones for the most part with minimal effort. The chips were fluffy and crisp, the sauce umami rich. It was quite a filling dish!
The final course was initiated with choya umeshu – a Japanese plum wine which was delightful. So sweet and light, it went down a treat for me. Not everyone loves plum wine, but I have a real affinity to it, and enjoy drinking it.
The wine was well matched to our final course for the evening – black sesame surprise. It looked like a beautiful work of art when it came out to the table, a black sesame mousse with caramelised cashew nuts, chantilly cream balanced on a chocolate sheet and a scoop of vanilla ice-cream. Abstract in appearance, but flavour-wise it was so lovely, with the mousse soft and melt in your mouth. I thought the addition of a couple berries was clever to cut through the richness, though I would have liked a couple more. But all in all, a real high to finish the meal on and leave me nice and full.
You can try Sushia’s special Eat Drink Perth menu for yourself until 23 April, and their standard menu will continue running during this time as well.