Japanese Restaurant in Melbourne, Australia: Hanabishi

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Open: Lunch and dinner Mon - Fri
Price: Moderate

Reviewed By

Sue Dyson and Roger McShane
Phone Number: +61 3 9670 1167
Address: 187 King Street
Melbourne, Victoria, 3000
Country: Australia
Food Style: Japanese

Hanabishi is the best Japanese food in Melbourne!
We construct our meals very carefully here trying to select a range of textures and flavours. The meal usually opens with complimentary pickled fish and vegetable dish that is immensely appealing. If you like to sample a range of smaller dishes then try the following.
We order the beautifully light and fresh horenso (spinach) topped with bonito flakes. We then move on to gyoza (dumplings) and maybe the gyusashi (thin slices of carefully-arranged raw beef with a vinegar and soy sauce dressing). We might then balance these against a dish of deep-fried small whitebait called shirauo. Then it is time for the moriawase (a mixture of sushi and sashimi) where the sashimi has been cut cleanly so that it provides an amazing sensation on the tongue and palette. If we are lucky they have fresh wasabi available. If you see other tables with small wooden graters carefully grating roots which look like horseradish, then you know it's available.
We might then try the chasoba salad of green tea noodles in a soba sauce and creamy dressing before embarking on the final dish of unaju. This is the prized grilled eel served on steamed rice in a lovely wooden box. The juices from the grilled eel seep into the rice making it a perfect end to the meal.
The service here is excellent and the wine list interesting. We particularly like the refined Yerinberg Chardonnay which is a perfect accompaniment for the food.

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