Delightfully delicious – Nobu Melbourne
Crown Towers Melbourne, 8 Whiteman St, Southbank Victoria Australia
Executive Chef: Nobu Matsuhisa
Known for: Japanese Peruvian fusion cuisine
An unexpected delay in Melbourne thanks to a cancelled flight had an upside when a visit to Nobu Melbourne could be arranged at the last minute. This famous restaurant name is known worldwide due to the media-salivating ownership of investor Robert De Niro and celebrity Chef Nobu Matsuhisa. This potent Hollywood partnership is left at the rather unassuming wood panelled door that resides in the catacombs of the massive Crown complex in Southbank Melbourne.
The welcome was quick and efficient with a reserved seat by the windows overlooking the Southbank boardwalk and a bowl of salty edamame at the table within two minutes. The menu is equally efficient with a sectional menu that offers Bentos, Donburi (dishes with soup and pickles), hot and cold dishes and the obligatory signature dishes. When dining alone a menu can be very rigid and you do not get a chance to sample many dishes, however this menu gave great freedom to pick and choose from the sections.
There is no mistaking the quality of ingredients in the menu. Most diners came for the quick Bento boxes, the a la carte menu was fresh and deftly handled. The sushi was devoid of unnecessary garnishes which let the quality and the cut of the ingredient come to the forefront. Highlights were the salmon skin roll (signature), the scallop nigiri and the delightfully light Snow Crab tacos. The dish that did not shine was the tempura tofu but not because of a lack of flavour, but the size which could have been cut in half to avoid wrestling it into submission with minimal fuss.
This visit to Nobu was a delight which made the canceled flight a little more palatable. I look forward to experiencing what the rest of the 22 restaurant chain.