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Saturday, October 13, 2012

Bites: Fuku @ Mosman Park


Yesterday, was a Monday which was far exciting than I expected.  Coming home from work, I quickly dressed myself before pacing myself through a horrible jam to the suburb of Mosman Park.  3 weeks ago, I was invited to the opening of something different.  Owner of Tsunami, Brett and his capable crew has establish a new exclusive eatery called Fuku.  Believe it or not, the venue only sits 16 at any one time despite having enough sake to fill the bellies of a entire ship crew. 


Seeing is believing:


Diners are spoilt with a whole wall arranged with premium sakes all hand picked by the chef!


The menu at Fuku is a degustation which comes in three trims.  A entry level Omakase @ $110, a mid level one @ $160 and the extravagant one at $280.   These prices include unlimited bottle water as well as green tea for diners. For the night, the little darling and I had the mid level degustation @ $160 per person.  These degustation featured many Japanese food which at first might seem a little typical, but in reality is prepared to provide a heightened sense of satisfaction.


Upon being seated, the chef quickly trimmed the finest slices of sashimi I have had in an extremely long time.  To begin with, I hate sashimi and to convince me to eat it, it has to be pretty good!  The salmon was perfect but what caught my attention was the swordfish sashimi which was spot on.  Definitely a textural kick.  Felt like the smoothest slice on the plate! Spot on.  Finishing the raw slices, we tucked into the blow torched Nigiris which I always like due to the buttery richness of the fish when torched.



The next course was another serve of spoon size food which featured the wagyu, a lobster on a spoon and a shell fish.  Is this surf and turf at its finest?   Maybe so!  My favourite of the lot would be the Tsubugai and Octopus served on a small bed of cucumber strips.  That one has just perfect balance of freshness and that slight hint of acidity made it a real pleaser.  Beef was nice with a miso concoction and some salsa.  Really nice!  If anything was missing, perhaps a touch of salt on the lobster would have been nice!


After this course, we served a quail course. No picture on this one but the quail was cooked for 12 hours before being smoked on a charcoal grill.  These quails are from Hunter Valley which boasts to have some of the largest quails in the planet.  Over all, the sauce was good and the quail was finished with a note of smokiness which was a nice touch!  We were also served scallops with prawns which is one of the other sure hit combination besides pork belly and scallops.  For me, the large scallops were cooked spot on.  Really sweet and tasty with no loss of juiciness like one would expect from a plump scallop!


Kajiki steak with Daikon radish and preserved ginger.  Each individual element was very well prepared.   The Kajiki or swordfish was spot on and to people like me who has not had such fish before, its texture is really quite different.  Some might mistake the texture to an overcooked fish which in fact is not overcooked.  Daikon radish were soft through with just enough resistance when being cut.  Overpowering ginger performed really well when small bits were eaten with the fish and radish!   This was one of the dishes I liked best!  



One of the two chefs entertaining the diners.  This chef is cheeky and is very crafty with his hands.  He easily juggles the eggs with his Teppanyaki spatula!  Sitting around the kitchen is not only a Teppanyaki experience, but rather an entertaining one!



Wagyu sirloin steak Mayura Station grade 7.  While this was not the highest grade, it was certainly enough for a decent melt in your mouth sensation when prepared at medium.  And for me, that was good enough.  The steak was served together with a classic Japanese Garlic fried rice.  A state where fried rice and simplicity is at its best.  What turned out to be a let down for me was that the fried rice lacked salt.  A great amount of salt.  Luckily enough, a quick soy fix made it right!


At the end of the night, I was filled.  Fish, seafood, bird and beef.. it felt complete.  Freshly slices sashimi, perfectly cooked scallops and beef.  It was all pretty good but the boss was not going to let the night end without a sweet note.


For dessert: Genmaicha Pannacotta, Japanese Baumkuchen and Mountain Peach with Kinako!


The Baumkuchen felt a little dense as it was a layered cake.  It had a nice crust of lightly torched sugar.  On the inside, its texture felt a little more like a semolina cake rather than a layered sponge.  What felt really nice is that the mountain peach feels connected to the Baumkuchen in a way that having one of the other helped cut through the sweetness a little.  As for the Pannacotta, I can only insist that such fine things should come in larger serves.  I gave half mine to the little darling as I knew she loved her Pannacotta a lot!  It was silky smooth with a hint of tea taste that felt very subtle.  Perhaps a little subtle for green tea fans.  A very delicious Pannacotta!


At the end of the meal, there always is a question to be answered.   Was the experience a good one?  Well, I cannot help but feel indebted to be invited to something so special in Perth.  Food is prepared to my expectations and as I have learned from my sitting at Fuku, the small group of 16 at any one time also felt part of a social experience as everyone can talk to one another despite being strangers.  Not sure how much would other couples like this but it was definitely lovely to be able to chat with other people without any awkward feeling because the restaurant felt intimate in many ways.  At the end, some might question the price tag but everyone would have different a opinion. In my opinion, everyone needs to try and get their own :)!



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