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Tokonoma by Toko

Home > Sydney > Dinner | Restaurants
by Monica Keo (subscribe)
I eat out on the weekends at different restaurants and then write about them. Otherwise I am looking at art, cooking or gardening. Soon to be a blogger under food curator__ where you can have a visual feast.
Published November 1st 2017
Find the hidden Japanese restaurant behind the green door
If the warmer weather makes you crave sashimi, edamame and sushi, what a better way then to try a hidden Japanese restaurant. Situated right beneath The Bridge Room, on the corner of Young Street, Sydney CBD, you will discover Tokonoma.

Simple and sleek interior

The other half to Toko in Surry Hills, which boasts a more extensive menu and a larger dining space, Tokonoma is a more intimate venue with a semi-casual feel and a much smaller menu.

Tokonoma's aesthetic is what you expect at most Japanese restaurants, simple, elegant and slightly oriental - the palette soft neutral tones with dashes of green.

Quiet on a Friday evening, there was one host and one waitress.
With a minimal menu, it was quite easy to order within the first 10 minutes upon seating.

Large sashimi platter

Hirashima kingfish in ponzu

My partner and I started with their large sashimi platter (24pieces) $64, which consists of your favourite sashimi cuts of tuna, kingfish, snapper, scallops and salmon, then we ordered the hirashima kingfish in ponzu $21, which was subtle and refreshing, followed by the yellowfin tuna tataki $22. Out of the kingfish and the yellowfin tuna, the kingfish was the better option.

Yellowfin tuna tataki

Signature spicy tuna maki roll

After that, we tried their signature maki roll, though you won't find their options on the menu and instead the host will go over the three variations they have from seared salmon, spicy tuna and kingfish. The first one we got was the spicy tuna, which came in about six small pieces with crispy rice on the outside.

Tempura moreton bay bug

Excited to try their robata grill, we absolutely had to try the tempura zucchini flower with tofu feta and of course the moreton bay bug tempura with a yuzu mayonnaise. Both were what you would expect, satisfying.

Slightly expensive, the zucchini flowers are served individually and you can expect to pay $9 for one flower. Though, I could have easily eaten four to myself. Still hungry, we decided to order the other two signature maki rolls.

Signature seared salmon maki roll

Now, the seared salmon roll was divine, covered in saffron strands and wrapped in the thinnest layer of salmon, this was my most favourite dish of the night. Hands down, be sure to order it if you go. The kingfish roll was still nice and the sesame seeds on the outside gave it a nice nutty taste, though, after the seared salmon roll, I could not make any comparisons.

Was Tokonoma worth the try since we enjoyed Toko, yes it was, simply because of the zucchini flowers and seared salmon. I highly recommend being prepared to spend on small dishes, particularly if you are hungry. Though perhaps, try some other things that we didn't, like the beef tartare or the cod (which is always a winner), all of which you can find on their menu.
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Why? Another place to try seared salmon maki roll
Phone: 61 2 9251 8185
Where: Corner of Bridge Street, Sydney CBD
Cost: Mid-range, $6 - $ 44
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