My very first adventure with Adelaide Food Central had me headed to Japanese-French fusion restaurant Ginza Miyako, tucked away in the Stamford Plaza. Ginza Miyako is a popular spot for those travelling for business and looking for a high quality and convenient meal, and while this was evident in all of the solo diners (looking slightly lonely but also pleased to be eating on their company’s dollar) there were also plenty of locals for a Tuesday night. The restaurant has a serene Japanese feel, with a great people-watching view of North Terrace, and features a room with traditional zabutons (floor cushions) and low tables for an authentic experience.
We were very happy to be enjoying the Taste of Ginza Miyako tasting menu. Available on Fridays, the menu features two entrees, two mains and a dessert for $59pp (although we couldn’t help ordering a few extras as well). With sake on hand, and a fantastic Matcha Margarita for me, we dove in. First up was a Mixed Tempura, perfect for sharing with two of everything, and a delicate, crisp batter. Tempura is a fine art, and Ginza Miyako have nailed it.
Next was the Wagyu Carpaccio, and this was easily the highlight of our evening. A very Instagram-worthy plate of food, the thinly sliced, melt in your mouth Wagyu was complemented with an Ume (Japanese plum) mayo, handmade Jerusalem artichoke chips, feta cheese, and a Japanese pickle. Sweet, salty and crunchy – the perfect combo.
Unable to resist trying as many dishes as we could, the Mixed Entree Platter was our own addition to the tasting. It features a sample of each of the 9 entrees offered on the dinner menu. Wagyu carpaccio, vegetable terrine, Tasmanian salmon confit, sashimi, pork terrine, tomato and tofu salad, and two fresh Coffin Bay oysters (both served differently, one with a citrusy yuzu and miso chilli sauce, and one with an Ume and soy vinegar). The last sample was thinly sliced duck breast, beautifully pink in the middle and not featured on the regular menu. Highlights? The plump oysters, whose accompaniments complemented rather than masked the fresh flavours of the sea, and the pork terrine that incorporated Japan with a black miso chicken liver pate.
Have you ever eaten roast beef and mash potatoes with chopsticks? Neither had I until this particular meal. While most dishes leaned more towards traditional Japanese cuisine, rather than French, the roasted Coorong Angus Eye Fillet was the dish that most beautifully drew together the two cuisines. Medium rare, tender, with confit mushrooms, delightfully creamy potato puree, puffy seaweed meringue and, my favourite part, a wasabi foam that added a perfect punch to each mouthful – just enough kapow but without the eyes watering, nasal passage clearing effect that too much of the fresh stuff can illicit. Wasabi’s similarity to horseradish paired it perfectly with the eye fillet.
Can you go wrong with sushi? I suppose yes, you can. But we were very happy with the Mixed Sushi Platter. A selection of raw seafood nigiri, the platter featured squid, prawn, kingfish, and some more unusual options, but the highlight was a perfectly pink tuna – served with more wasabi, of course.
Our second personal addition to the tasting, the Seasonal Grilled Market Fish, was done saikyo style – marinated in a sweet miso sauce and a crispy puffed rice crumb. The fried taro potato balls and handmade sweet potato chips made this a unique dish.
Finally, after the appropriate number of jokes about leaving ‘just enough room’ and ‘second stomachs’, we were presented with dessert. A Hazelnut Sponge with Raspberries was interesting, not too sweet, and unusual enough to challenge diners who might not be familiar with Asian style desserts. The Matcha Tiramisu was accompanied by the star of the desserts – a deliciously creamy and refreshing black sesame ice cream.
Ginza Miyako’s French take on Japanese cuisine and attention to detail, coupled with elegant decor and attentive staff, makes this a thoroughly enjoyable Adelaide dining experience that you won’t find elsewhere.
Words by Jayne Pigou
WHERE: Level 1, 150 North Tce, Adelaide