Categories
Café Japanese

Ippuku – Rosebery NSW Restaurant Review

Ippuku is a small and in my opinion underrated Japanese cafe in Rosebery. Despite some somewhat middling reviews online I decided to take the plunge and visit for some sandos before an evening shift at work.

Ippuku is a nice, bright cafe with plenty of natural light and a selection of indoor table, indoor high table, and well ventilated outdoor seating, ideal for the COVID paranoid. Staffing was by a predominately Japanese crew with a Caucasian man making yummy warm juice from Single O coffee beans.

I was in a bit of a rush so I asked to have my pork katsu sando inside and the rest of the food to be packed for takeaway so that I could eat it later at work. I think unfortunately I did not communicate this very well, as similar to Yummy Duck BBQ just around the corner I received all of my food in take-away form. This was ultimately not a big deal as I was able to try each of the items that I ordered fresh.

Pork Katsu Sando

The Pork Katsu Sando ($13) was really good. The pork cutlets were thinner than I’m used to from places like Kentaro, Oratnek, and Sandoitchi, but this was by no means a problem. Indeed I found this pork cutlet to be extra juicy, with the welcome addition of a few fatty bits around the edges to mix the flavour and texture up a bit. Unlike my previous experiences this sandwich was served with tomato, which provided an extra level of freshness to the sando and reminded me a bit of MOS Burger’s tomato burgers. Really good.

Ebi Sando

The Ebi Sando ($16) is a recent addition to the menu, and features a generous serving of thick, juicy battered and fried prawns in a bit of an egg-salad tartare sauce. I loved the juicy prawny prawns and how the sandwich was just jam packed with them. I really enjoyed the half of this sandwich that I had fresh, but found the sauce a bit too fishy when I had the second half a few hours later. It was a few dollars more expensive than the pork sando but definitely worth a try.

The pork gyoza (6 for $10) were a bit disappointing. I appreciate that they were pork and chive rather than pork and cabbage, but I just didn’t think they were all that flavourful. It tends to take a lot for a Japanese gyoza to impress me though – I tend to like Chinese dumplings more.

UPDATE 12/12/2020

Wagyu beef burger

The Wagyu Beef Burger ($16) is pretty good, but pretty expensive and ultimately just a normal burger. It was not a Japanese hamburg patty which is what I expected. It was really just a classic hamburger with a thick juicy internally-pink patty, cheese, pickles, tomato, onion, lettuce, and sauce. Quite steep for $16 and not at all special.

The Chashu Rice ($17) is quite bad, and I would recommend you stay far away from this. Forever. The egg is nice and partially cooked and runny, bunt that’st eh end of the compliments. I found the fried rice to be sticky and not flavourful. The chashu was dry and not fatty enough to break up the bland fried rice taste. A very bad dish for you to avoid.

Chicken katsu sandwich

I drove home from Ippuku and dropped off this chicken katsu sandwich ($13) for my girlfriend. I can’t really tell you anything about it apart from the fact that she thought it was pork and enjoyed it. I asked her to save me some, which she did, but she left it in the microwave for 10 hours instead of the fridge so I didn’t feel safe enough to have any.

VERDICT
Don’t fall victim to negative Nancys on Zomato. I’d strongly recommend a visit to Ippuku for their delicious sandos.

4.5/5

Ippuku Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Categories
Café Japanese

Cafe Kentaro – Surry Hills, NSW Restaurant Review

Kentaro is a Japanese-themed cafe in Surry Hills. Its menu and name are suspiciously reminiscent of Orantek in Redfern. It remains unclear if these similarities are a product of convergent or divergent evolution.

We were seated on either end of a very long table outside, presumably due to COVID-19 social distancing restrictions. These restrictions did not apply to the diners sitting next to each other inside the cafe. I cannot comment on the decor as we did not go inside.

Matcha Mille-feuille

Matcha Mille-feuille – Good. Matcha slightly bitter. Girlfriend enjoyed the brown sauce but misidentified it as vegemite.

The Pork Katsu Sandwich

The Pork Katsu Sandwich was very good. Light fluffy bread with fresh, juicy katsu. My only critique would be that it was oversauced on the rightmost piece and undersauced on the leftmost piece. There’s probably no way to prevent this. The sandwich was very reminiscent of the one that I had from Oratnek a few months ago.

Hojicha milkshake

The Hojicha milkshake was actually amazing and I want four more. Very nice. Not too sweet. Braved it even though I didn’t have lactase on me.

Overall rating: I would recommend to a friend or colleague.

Cafe Kentaro
+61 2 9699 2665
616 Bourke St, Surry Hills NSW 2010

Cafe Kentaro Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato