Monday, June 9, 2014

Izakaya Den $38 lunch special

A quick catch up lunch with a friend brought us to Izakaya Den. We take a look at the a la carte menu but end up settling on the 'Den Classics' lunch special - $38 per person, two choices for each of the four courses plus a drink.

We order different dishes and share, so end up with one serve of everything.

green tea
The green tea is served in a cute little glass teacup with a round bottom. It doesn't hold much, but with an individual pot each, it's fine to just pour as you go.

First out are the fried crunchy bites. Two of Izakaya Den's must-try dishes - the den fried chicken and the sweet corn kaki-age (fritters).
den fried chicken
The den fried chicken is coated in a light batter and deep fried, served with a wedge of lemon and some mayo on the side. Crispy on the outside, still moist and tender on the inside.

sweet corn kaki-age w/ green tea salt
The kaki-age is as good as ever. I first tried this dish as the Taste of Melbourne 2010 and again when I visited the restaurant on one of my Melbourne trips. It's the perfect combination of juicy corn kernels suspended in a light batter and served simply with some green tea salt. I must say, there really is something special about the green tea infused salt that really lifts the flavours of this dish.

Up next are the cold dishes - a tuna tataki and kingfish sashimi.

tuna tataki w/ garlic soy & wasabi cream
kingfish sashimi w/ asian dressing
The fish is super fresh, and the dressings are light and simple, but work well with each type of fish.
ocean trout
Perfectly cooked so that it flakes away at a slight touch. Good seasoning with a side of pickles.

kurobuta pork belly
Pork belly is always a fun one for reviewers. The crackling was crispy, the meat tender. The only downside was that the fat hadn't been rendered properly and so was a little too oily for my liking.

Then it was dessert time.

apple mille feuille
This dessert was brilliant - like a mini apple pie stack. Light crispy filo parcels of stewed apples, drizzled with a light syrup and served with a some fresh strawberries.

black sesame brulee
And creme brulee. Nice hard toffee crunch on the top, creamy brulee filling.

For $38, there's definitely plenty of food. Perhaps a little pricey for a 'quick lunch', but definitely value for money if you have the time to sit back and enjoy it!

Izakaya Den on Urbanspoon


leaf (the indolent cook) said...

I had a great dinner at Izakaya Den - looks like I should check out their lunch special, too!

Sally Li said...

so pretty and I want to try Saigon Fusion one day

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