In a candlelit, suburban restaurant, I escaped the busyness of city-life for authentic, delicious Korean-Japanese fusion. The food was brought out steaming and crackling, such that it looked like it was still being magically cooked by the hot plate itself. It was so scrumptious you could see the taste.
When people decide where to dine, there are two outstanding options: stay at home for the quietness and comfort, or go out for the delicious, chef-made cuisine and cultural experience. At Sanya, you can have both.
Located in Artarmon, and just a two minute walk from the station, Sanya specialises in Tempura pawns and seafood salad. It costs on average $30 per person for dinner (which includes starter, main and drinks), with a $10 lunch special every day except Tuesday.
First, I was enamoured by the experience. Sipping hot green tea with roasted brown rice left a beautiful, subtle buzz of flavour on my tongue. For entree, a dish of potato, red bean and sprout salad was served; not mixed, but presented in separate shallow cups. This is typical of Korean food; the flavour in each little potato, bean and sprout is strong enough to be enjoyed alone, let alone mixed.
The Kimchi Jeon pancake is a flavoursome, golden crepe with kimchi judiciously cooked into it. Kimchi is actually the national dish of Korea and consists of vegetables enriched with varied seasoning.
Two great Teppanyaki dishes were the beef, and the sweet chilli salmon. A traditional and famous Japanese style of cooking, Teppan means iron plate, and yaki means pan-fried, broiled or grilled. These dishes were brought out on the iron griddle, with the meat, vegetables and sauce still crackling. The order includes miso soup and a bowl of rice.
The hot pots are always good for a cold, winter night. Not only do I love them for the taste, but such a big bowl of beef noodle soup is a real decadent challenge to finish. The ladle is always fun to sip from too.
Steaming hot pot
We stayed for another hour after finishing, just basking in the lovely atmosphere of the place. I'm hungry and craving it again from just writing about the restaurant. My memory is only working off the heavenly aftertaste, and it will need a visit to Sanya again to be properly reminded of the truly piquant Korean-Japanese cuisine.