Toko Japanese Izakaya Review:
Our review this week came from a Japanese izakaya restaurant, called Toko. The restaurant is located in a busy suburb of Surry Hills in Sydney. We were there to celebrate one of our friends’ birthday with a set menu, Matsuri Banquet Menu. There was quite an extensive list of items in the menu.
Edamame – soy beans, maldon sea salt
There is nothing out of the ordinary to talk about here. It was just a regular edamame.
Hiramasa no usuzukuri – sliced kingfish, yuzu, chives
It was another quick munch-and-devour dish that was not memorable enough.
Koushi no tataki – venison carpaccio, nashi pear, yuzu koshu, potato airbags
This venison was the first dish that we took notice. It was quite a spicy dish. The potato airbags gave an added crunch to the dish.
Japanese salad – seasoned leaves, asparagus, cucumber, avocado, light-wafu
Some of our friends thought that Japanese salad was the best dish of the day. Although I am not a big salad eater, I actually quite enjoyed it. It was sad to think that salad was the best dish in a degustation.
Osashimi omakase – assorted fish from chef’s best selection of the day
It was supposed to be the dish that would bring the wow factor. Instead, we were given the usual sashimi: salmon, tuna, kingfish, scallop, and snapper. To make things worse, we didn’t think the tuna and scallop were sashimi fresh.
Toko signature maki – chef’s selection of maki rolls
Again, there were three ‘standard’ maki rolls: california, ebi, and kingfish.
Pirikara dofu to avocado – spicy fried tofu, avocado salsa, barley miso
Despite the word ‘spicy’, the tofu is nothing but spicy. The venison was actually more spicy than this one. The tofu was also quite dense.
Ebi tempura – crispy prawn tempura, dashi broth
It was a very ordinary prawn tempura. Each one of us only got ONE mediocre prawn.
Wafu zucchini – zucchini, waft sauce, sesame
Despite being only one stick of zucchini, this robatayaki was actually quite enjoyable.
Sake no aburi yaki – smoked miso king salmon, house pickled ginger
Personally, I think this dish was the best for the night. Unfortunately, we had to share this salmon amongst the four of us. It was just my luck that I was also the only one getting fish bone in my piece.
Ko-tori hoba oven-yaki – miso marinated spatchcock baby chicken
We wereIt was a deboned spatchcock. The glazing was almost similar to the salmon.
Dessert platter – chef’s selection of toko desserts
The dessert platter was the saving grace for us. There were quite a lot of elements on it – basically it was all of their desserts lumped into one. The desserts on the plate were rhubarb crumble, pannacotta, fondant, three types of ice cream and assortment of fruits.
Considering that they are an izakaya place, their drink menu was pretty good.
The final verdict for Toko Japanese Izakaya
It is quite sad that this amazing venue was majorly let down by its subpar degustation selection. The king salmon and dessert platter were the ones that saved our night.
Did you know?
The group has three restaurants in Australia. One of them is also in Sydney, called Tokonoma, and the other is in Melbourne.
Rating for Toko Japanese Izakaya:
7.0 / 10
Taste: 7.0 / 10
Price: $100 with drinks
Place: 8.5 / 10
490 Crown Street, Sydney 2010
+61 2 9357 6100