Kobe Jones Teppanyaki – Dinner – The Rocks

Teppanyaki conjures up images of flying eggs and flinging fried rice. In Japan, it is actually in relation to the iron hot plate the food is cooked on.

I had various foods flung at me a few weeks ago but knew that I would be expecting something a little different at Kobe Jones – less food on the torso, for instance.

Arriving at the restaurant, it looked like it wanted to be a French sitting room, not a Japanese restaurant. There were antique couches and rustic fireplaces.

It looked like a very cosy setting and it didn’t have a remotely restaurant feel to the place when you enter.

We’re taking on an epic food challenge of the 15 course ‘The whole shebang’ and I’m feeling hungry. Technically though, it’s more like 13 courses as 2 of the courses are just leftover bits from what we’ve already eaten – doesn’t sound appealing but it was oh so tasty, see below & all shall be revealed.

As soon as I enter, I am seated at a large teppanyaki table sharing with a few others whilst I wait for my dining companion. The 2 gentlemen next to me were a son & father-in-law who were lovely to converse with.

But first things first, my throat is a bit parched so it’s time for a cocktail.

Kobe Jones Sunset – $17

Strawberry liqueur, mango liqueur, mandarin vodka with cranberry & pineapple juice.

Spicy edamame

I was in Japan a little while back and bought a little keyring toy, it looked like an edamame and when you squeezed it, a soya bean bulged out. Here I am, first time edamame eater and my instinct is to peel open the pod to get to the beans inside. However, my memory of the toy is triggered so I pick one up and give it a squeeze popping the bean straight into my mouth – success! Toys do emulate real life 😀

Seafood poke

Poke is a Hawaiian style raw fish dish, similar to cerviche usually marinated with lemon. This dish consisted of cubes of sashimi with a special Hawaiian marinade and was delicious. A light and fresh way to start into our meal while the grill is heating up.

Seafood Roll

Fresh ingredients, I’m a fan of roe due to the flavour & especially the texture, great sauce & everything combined well.

Let the teppanyaki magic begin – flame on!!

Flaming No. 1 Special

Crab salad & avocado, wrapped in kingfish, slathered in special sauce & flamed for a bit of pizzaz at the table. I don’t know what was in the special sauce but it was mighty fine and a very enjoyable morsel. One of my favs of the night.

Sake pairing with Flaming No.1 Special

I’m not a big fan of sake, even when it is paired so well with the dish that the flavours are accentuated. I still drank it but I’d much rather have my cocktails, or beer, or wine, etc.

Speaking of cocktails, I was ready to move onto my next one.

Flower Sermon – $17

Apologies as I cannot recall what is in this one, but I do believe there was tea in there somewhere.

The chef has several customers to cook for and entertain at the same time

Hot mushroom salad

It doesn’t look like much, but the mushrooms were cooked before us and were darn tasty. Could have been heavier on the mushrooms but the seaweed butter dressing that the ‘shrooms were cooked in was awesome.

Sashimi

Scallops, salmon, kingfish & tuna – fresh & delicious. Simple and yet so tasty.

Salivating at the next meal & waiting for the chef to cook it up for us

Prawns, scallops & salmon

The chef asked us if we wanted garlic on our seafood & we said, ‘hell’s yeah’. The prawns were skillfully beheaded & de-veined with the prawn heads flattened on the teppan & left to crisp up for later.

Cooked Alaskan Crab

So sweet, so delicious, I think this was my top dish of the day. *sigh*

Raw lobster – biding it’s time

In the background you can see our prawn heads cooking away, getting nice & tasty for later.

Western rock lobster

Great lobster, although I did prefer the Alaskan crab.

Prawn heads – finally crisp & ready to eat

So crunchy, with such a concentrated flavour – if you’ve never had prawn heads before, you’ll be converted with these.

Vodka lemon sorbet

Just a little palette cleanser, did it’s job now it’s time for the next dish.

Next course in the making

Veggies getting cooked, beef getting seared, then it’s all rolled together

Wagyu roll

Thin slivers of Wagyu 6+ rolled around asparagus, carrot & spinach and flavoured with butter, soy & brandy.

Miso soup

Of course, a Japanese banquet would not be complete without the miso. Sweet & flavoursome, a strain on my already full stomach but I soldiered on. The end was nigh and I was disappointed to be finishing but looking forward to a break from eating, I was just that full.

Garlic Fried Rice

And of course, no Asian banquet would be complete without fried rice. Again, cooked on the teppan with a few bits left to continue cooking for our next course. It didn’t look like there was much to this dish, not too many ingredients going in but what came out was so tasty.

Leftover rice

As mentioned above, some of the rice was squished flat on the teppan and left to cook to form a wonderful crust, similar to the bottom of a paella.

Dinner theatrics

Of course, there had to be a bit more of the theatrics for the last dish. A lovely, un-Japanese dessert being flamed before our eyes.

Crepe Suzette

The restaurant had a french feel to it and I guess it shouldn’t have been surprising that the dessert was French. I don’t know of any Japanese desserts that require flambe and there needed to be a bit of flame to finish out the night, I suppose.

Great flavours, crepes were not floury, you could taste the orange liqueur and the glaze was absolutely delicious. Quite sweet but with a refreshing dollop of vanilla ice cream.

Service

Was fantastic, someone was always there whenever I was parched and I was never without a drink. Additionally, once the chef has completed the dish, she places it on the edge of the teppan and a waitperson then moves it 20cm to right in front of you.

Cutlery

Being quite an expensive place, it really was a shock to see disposable wooden chopsticks – that was definitely not what I expected. Additionally, the cutlery that came with dessert had not been polished and looked a bit dingy.

Unless you’re getting the “cheap” DIY burger ($45), odds are pretty good that you’re going to spend >$100 per person. For that, I would expect proper, polished cutlery.

The lowdown:

The good – excellent food & service, there wasn’t a dish that I didn’t enjoy, the quality of the ingredients really stood out. Favourites would have to be Flaming No. 1 Special, Alaskan Crab & Crepe Suzette.

The bad

The mediocre – the chef and she gladly chatted away with us, but only once we initiated conversation halfway through the meal. I guess as the chef is right in front of us, I’d appreciate more interaction & engagement, otherwise there’s no point having a chef out of the kitchen

Details:

Kobe Jones The Rocks Teppanyaki

176 Cumberland Street The Rocks Sydney NSW 2000

Phone: (02) 9251 5430 (I’m not sure why, but I’ve called several times and got the run around being transferred all over the place… good luck)

Email: rocksteppanyaki@kobejones.com.au

http://www.kobejones.com.au/the-rocks-teppanyaki

Rocks Teppanyaki on Urbanspoon

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