Excuse me but can someone remind me where we are? I thought we had already left Japan?
That's right, the snapshot above is from Rengaya in North Sydney. Rengaya has been Australia's first and finest Japanese BBQ restaurant in Australia since 1993. They use only the best Japanese Black Cattle and the freshest seafood to prepare their dishes for you. You know when eating at Rengaya, only the best will make it to your plate!
Orange and Passion fruit Chu-hai
Japanese Vodka, Fresh Orange, Fresh Passion fruit and Soda.
Have you ever made your own cocktail in a restaurant? Neither have we until now! Not only do they provide you with all the ingredients, but the fruit juice is fresh, so fresh that you have to squeeze it yourself! As for the taste? The vodka had left a very strong aftertaste, however when you slurp up some of the passion fruit seeds it makes it all worth while!
Very Berry Cooler Mocktail
This mocktail was enjoyable and tasted great, however there was too many berry bits trapped at the bottom. With every sip, you had a piece of berry in your mouth which became quite irritating. It almost felt like a berry dessert! It was definitely refreshing and sweet though which is all you could ask for a mocktail!
Wagyu Flap Meat
When ordering meat at Rengaya, they ask whether you would like your meat marinated in sauce or salt. For this meat, because it was so tender, we opted for the sauce marinade. Just make sure you don't overcook such a delicate piece of Wagyu. If cooked right (only about a minute on each side) this piece of meat can be quite moist and tender - hands down the best Wagyu we have tried!
Washoku Lovers Special
Be sure to sign up to Washoku Lovers and wave your Washoku Lovers card to enjoy this amazing deal. You get 2 x premium beef rib and 2 x premium beef loin for only $20!! While the loin and the beef rib were not as tender as the flap meat, both were still great pieces of meat. We choose to have the salt option for this meat to give us a change of taste.
Premium Pork Rib
There are plenty of options to select from off the menu, more seafood than red/white meat though. Because Matt isn't a fan of seafood, we had to try the pork ribs. These ribs had little to no fat on them, and cooked quite well. If cooked right, it will have just enough colour on the outside and enjoyed well with the side sauces served.
We thought that it might be best to order some vegetables to accompany our meat. Christie called dibs on all the mushrooms, while Matt took the corn and capsicum! We had accidentally left the corn on the grill for too long and it started popping like popcorn (NO JOKE)! So being the scientists that we obviously are not, we continued to do it in an attempt to make popcorn!
Garlic served with sesame oil
You might not think so, but this garlic dish is perfect to enjoy as a side while you are eating the Wagyu beef. The foil plate remains on top of the hot plate throughout your entire seating, as the garlic is cooked to your liking. Our one was almost deep frying in the sesame oil at the end!
Bibimbap served with soup
Vegetables, egg, beef mince and dried seaweed on rice in a hot stone pot.
If you have ever tried bibimbap before, you will know that it can be quite dry. This wasn't any different, with the only moisture coming from the poached egg. That said, the dish is served in a hot bowl, so the rice continues to cook at the bottom, leaving a very crispy treat at the end of the dish.
Ox Tail Soup
A spicy ox tail soup with herbs and vegetables
Christie works in North Sydney and her immediate reaction after she had a spoonful of ox tail soup was quit literally "OMG, I'M COMING HERE FOR LUNCH". She's a sucker for soup and it's also a great way to maintain a slim waistline during winter! The herbs (whatever they may be) truly brought out the flavours of the beef, and made it a coup that left us wanting more.
We now leave you with some action shots, as well as some snapshots of the location. It really does resemble the traditional Japanese restaurants found during our travels in Kyoto!
Thank you Rengaya and Washoku Lovers for hosting such a lovely evening. We will visit again the next time we are looking for a great Japanese Yakiniku experience!