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Published November 16th 2019
Chippendale's new yakiniku restaurant
In a city full of never-ending choices for where to eat, Gyusha is the newest Japanese yakiniku restaurant and retail meat shop in Chippendale, Sydney. The concept focus is of course on its namesake 'yakiniku'. For those unaware, yakiniku (焼き肉) translates directly to grilled meat in Japanese.
The restaurant is located close to the hub of Central Park. The ambience is spacious and inviting; this is the sort of place where locals and visitors feel right at home. Owners, Jon and Angie Choi, wanted to bring 'paddock to plate' concept to the Sydney restaurant.
Gyūsha brings high-quality wagyu beef direct from the local Dubbo family farm for customers to choose and grill themselves at their BBQ table or to take home to cook. Here at Gyūsha, you have the total control and select your cut of wagyu meat!
This new restaurant intends to be comfortable and less formal. However, we were very impressed with the low-key elegance that usually is associated with fine-dining. We were warmly greeted by the restaurant manager who was dressed in an impeccable uniform.
It was a warm night, so we started our dinner with some summer cocktails. My Japanese friend ordered a Shiso Smash cocktail and she absolutely enjoyed it. Sakurao gin is one of the newest gins from Japan, made from 9 carefully selected botanicals from Hiroshima, with a heavy base of citrus fruits.
Next, we received a stunning sushi platter as an entree. It featured all the popular sushi dishes such as oysters, kingfish sashimi, salmon sashimi and sea urchin rolls. My eyes immediately lit up when I saw the platter.
The seafood tasted very fresh and the chef had taken particular care with the knife skills to deliver the perfect sashimi platter. In particular, the kingfish and salmon sashimi tasted soft, rich and tender. Highly recommended.
We also tried a second entree which was the grilled John Dory fillet with cauliflower. My default position on seafood is to do as little to it as possible, and I was pleased to see Gyusha follows that philosophy. The John Dory fillets were lightly grilled to retain its natural taste. The cauliflower complemented the flavour nicely.
For the main event, the kitchen delivered an impressive BBQ platter to our table. On this particular platter, the chef has assembled wagyu outside skirt, wagyu beef tongue, wagyu sirloin, a stunning marbled scotch fillet steak and some rib fingers.
My Japanese friend was super keen on the premium grade wagyu beef tongue. They were thickly sliced to add texture and my friend expertly seared the tongue quickly on the grill then dipped it lightly in the yuzu soy sauce for the optimal taste sensation. She was in her element!
Next, we cooked the wagyu sirloin, outside skirt and the rib fingers together. These were highly marbled beef cubes and they were really tasty, tender and literally melt-in-our mouth. We also wrapped the grilled beef in a lettuce leaf and dipped it in a sesame sauce for a different taste sensation.
Our favourite of the night was a gorgeous wagyu scotch beef steak. We were informed this piece of steak has a wagyu scoring of 9 plus, which is rare in Australia. The intricate rivulets of marbling had us there. The steak had an evenly distributed marbling throughout which turned into a crispy outer char on the grill. It was the perfect balance of fat to meat ratio and cooked quickly on the grill.
With this premium quality of meat, you should only cook the beef briefly on the BBQ mesh. I watched in awe when my friend quickly seared the steak and enjoyed it in pure happiness. We only used lemon and salt to season this fine piece of meat and it was juicy and melt-in-our mouth with every bite.
The smell was absolutely intoxicating and the sizzling sound was delightful to our ears. I could see similar happy expressions from other diners as well. With a refreshing summer cocktail in my hand, this was a pure summer bliss.
We thoroughly enjoyed our dining experience at Gyusha. Gyusha's treatment of each piece of meat with the utmost respect, like you would expect from Japanese masters. There is very little pre-processing and artificial flavours - rather what you will get is the true natural taste.