When most Sydney-sider go out and think Japanese food you might head the the main strip and find a popular japanese place or sushi train.
Well you have all been fooled to think that was the best Japanese you have had. Hidden aways in the suburb of Cammeray near Neutral Bay off Military Road is a little Gem and if you blink you will drive pass it.
Known the many locals and ofcos and the Japanese community, Toriciya have been serving up very authentic Japanese food accompanies with a excellent selection of Sake. The food is fresh tasty...
The outer appearance of Toriciya has a more western Spanish villa feel to it , with decors of Saka bottles.
The small entrance door is a very traditional Japanese slide door and once you enter its like being transformed to the back street of Japan where after work all the workers gather to have Izakaya ( snacks and small portioned dishes) and drinks. Izakaya is like a national pass time with Japanese and as a tourist you might have missed the small back streets in Japan which are lined with Izakaya restaurants. I guess keeping with that style Toriciya is also pretty off beat.
Once you get into the restaurant, its very cosy and alot of times keeping with Izakaya style , you might have to share a table with your fellow eaters. So if you are planning to go, book early or you might have to stand outside waiting.
There is only 6 two people tables and the sushi bar which fits four.
I personally have been dying to go try this place and never quite got around to it. The main attraction of this place is not only the Izakaya style food and sushi its also the Sake.
You can purchase from the wide range of Sake by the bottle and if you don't finish it, Dont worry , they will store the bottle at the restaurant for you with you name tag on it. Kind of like those cigar bars where you have a locker to keep them in :p.
I wanted to try everything on the menu but clearly its not possible so , I went for the sushi degustation with additional order of Oysters , Slow braised ox tongue and extra two skewers of Yakitori.
Didn;t think i was aiming to high and totally though that it was possible to eat it all. Boy was i wrong .
I was so full but i still persisted to finish everything as it was so nice..
Hand made fish cakes with wasabi flower side dish:
This was definalty not like the usual fish cake you get in a than place. It was tastier no need to add spice to it , just a bit of Soy and it was awesome... yummm...
The wasabi flowers were interesting, initially i was looking at it thinking looks like Choy Sum . It taste like Choy Sum , but it will have the wasabi effect, it definitely cleared out the nasal passages
Fresh bake oysters :
You don't see it done like this all the time. I was lucky to have been sitting at the sushi bar so i got to see the chef cook the whole time.
It really show how well they pick their seafood as they added nothing to the Oysters and just pop them over the flames and grilled/bakes them off then served them up whole shell.
I felt like a little kid opening a present sneaking a peek at how big the oyster was actually inside and trying my best to open it up with out it flying off the dish :o) .i am very accident pron
Most Japanese places do this well so i guess i wasn't over excited about it ..
The seafood was fresh ...
Slow Braised Ox Tongue in Miso :
Yakitori - Chicken Skin , Liver and Meatballs
The house specialty is the Yakitori, they where really good and watching the cheft making it and being infront of me ready to eat was very exciting .
The main part of the sushi degustation ~~ the Sushi....
They have a extensive range of sushi so i might not go through all of them.
The hero for me was the taro and the salmon it was sooo fresh .
Around half way through the sushi mains i need to have a time out with tea and just ask the chef to stop making the sushi for a little while.
Basically this part of the degustation is like when you go to a traditional Japanese sushi bar ( i am not talking about sushi train where its pre-made). To ensure freshness the chefs make each sushi as you eat to ensure that the fish is in perfect condition for eating.
So you basically eat one and they made a new. I personally love these kinda of sushi bars.
The sushi making by the chef was impressive , the portion of the rice was perfect bite size unlike other restaurants. The portion of sashimi and rice is PERFECTION, the only other time i had the great balance is only when i was eating in Japan.
If you are ordering just be warn that the chef don;t really speak english well, so he might start talking one word in English and start explaining the rest in Japanese. So don't be so shocked just smile and node if you don't get it.