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Friday, November 25, 2005

Tomodachi, Broadway

crab sushi
Deep-fried soft-shell crab sushi $3.50

The food court crowd is a tough one.

Spinach pide boats jostle with lamb madras curries under the watchful eye of slowly twirling yeeros. The shiny happy salad bar and the sandwich counter beckon your conscience before your attention is diverted by the cake display, the gelato cart and the Chinese greasefest of all-you-can-plate.

And then your eyes alight upon the pretty cherry-blossom themed sushi bar Tomodachi. Tomodachi means "friend" in Japanese, and it looks like the kind of person you want to hang out with-- trendy, funky, clean and bright.

tomodachi inside

The menu here is a mix of Japanese and Korean dishes. Most customers tended to be couples, with many sitting at the sushi train counter to select their plates of choice. We were a rather large group and were seated at the varnished pine tables with bench seating.

We ordered a variety of dishes which arrived rather haphazardly throughout the meal. The onus seemed to be on us to clear space on the table; and at the conclusion of our meal we were often asked to pass heavy bowls and crockery as the table was cleared.

The food, on the whole though, was quite delicious. The crab sushi could've been crispier and the agedashi tofu (dusted in potato starch and then deep-fried) could've been stickier and more gelatinous, but the prawn tempura were light, non-greasy and perfectly battered.

agedashi tofu
Agedashi tofu $5.00

prawn tempura
Prawn tempura $8.50

We partook in a hotpot of bibimbab, that Korean favourite where assorted vegetables and beef lay atop white rice and crowned with a glistening orb of sunny yolk. The rainbow of colours is then swirled with chopsticks into a kind of wet non-fried rice and then blushed with a dab of crimson chilli sauce.

bibimbab
Bibimbab in hotpot $13.50

The sukiyaki is another raw-yolker. Suki means "spade" and yaki means "to cook". Our dish arrived already cooked, with a raw yolk provided for a frenzied riot into the soupy mixture. The beef in this dish was particularly tender.

sukiyaki
Sukiyaki $13.50

I wondered why the waiter seemed to pause above our table as he held this impressive platter of sashimi. Then I realised he expected me to help him place it down.

As I took hold, the full weight of the dish became known. Not only was the bamboo mat sitting on a heavy ceramic dish, the entire vessel was filled with ice cubes as well for extra freshness no doubt.

The fish was fresh, firm and tasty and the tuna especially was a reassuringly deep red colour.

sashimi
Jumbo sashimi platter (30 pieces) $35.50

We also ordered the chicken teriyaki and the unagi (broiled eel) both of which arrived with salads, boiled rice and a scoop of sweetened mashed potato (there was definitely sugar involved, which was quite intriguing). Both were good although with the amount of sugar involved in both dishes, it's rather hard to go wrong with either.

chicken teriyaki
Chicken teriyaki $13.00

unagi
Eel (unagi) $14.50

Tomodachi offers a nice compromise between sushi bar and sit-down Japanese dining. It's bright, airy and buzzy and besides, you can never have too many friends, right?

tomodachi placemat
Tomodachi Restaurant
Level 2 Food Court, Broadway Shopping Centre, Broadway Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9281 6000

15 comments - Add some comment love

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posted by Helen (AugustusGloop) on 11/25/2005 12:36:00 am


15 Comments:

  • At 11/25/2005 3:52 am, Anonymous Mama BoK said…

    So yummy..!!

     
  • At 11/25/2005 5:00 am, Blogger Robyn said…

    All that food looks so good. I wish we had a place like Tomodachi here. The mashed potato is an interesting touch!

     
  • At 11/25/2005 7:51 am, Blogger PiCkLeS said…

    when i went to Tomodachi we sat at the train instead of ordering one of the meals. I must say that in my experience i was very disappointed with the food.

    We would have gone on a Thursday night before our movie and we found that for the quality and size of the sushi pieces it was rather expensive and ordinary.

    I wouldn't recommend their sushi train but i'd give Tomodachi to try dishes from their menu.

     
  • At 11/25/2005 9:33 am, Blogger deborah said…

    Great pics Helen! I think I may conveniently organise our movie at Broadway tonight, seeing as I've been craving sushi all week ;)

    The crab sushi does look tempting; but the ones I had was different. It had the furikake coating instead of the caviar.

     
  • At 11/25/2005 9:35 am, Blogger deborah said…

    Oh and the mashed potato looks like a nod to their Korean owners! I love the Korean version of mashed potato; usually it has some corn in it as well... as well as some sweet mayo.

     
  • At 11/25/2005 11:41 am, Blogger M-H said…

    I like Tomodachi too. Convenient place and interesting food. It's much more popular than the Korean Hot Rocks place that was there before - that always seemed to be pretty much empty..

     
  • At 11/26/2005 8:22 am, Blogger J said…

    hi ag, gorgeous pictures as always that i have no doubt more than do justice to the subjects...and you've eloquently and succinctly captured what food court dining is exactly like - spot on!

     
  • At 11/26/2005 9:54 am, Blogger pseudo chef said…

    Great pics - the sashimi just looks so tempting.

     
  • At 11/26/2005 10:12 am, Blogger Veruca Salt said…

    Everything looks so good. Especially the sukiyaki and the sashimi platter.

    Did you use the egg for dipping or did you pour it into the soup?

     
  • At 11/26/2005 1:51 pm, Blogger Ben said…

    Interesting - your pics have made it seem much more appealing than when I've actually walked past it. And it's about lunch time now...

     
  • At 11/26/2005 1:52 pm, Blogger Ben said…

    Oh, and m-h, I went to that hot rocks once. I think the reason it was always empty was that it was poor value and poor quality (but then I've never been blown away by Korean BBQ; other Korean food is so much more interesting).

     
  • At 11/26/2005 5:13 pm, Blogger fooDcrazEE said…

    *wish i was there feeling*.....

     
  • At 11/26/2005 9:28 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi Mama Bok - It was!

    Hi Robyn - Like you can complain about your eating scene! =) The mash was unusual, but still tasty.

    Hi Pickles - I had suspected that the sushi train was better than the a la carte! =) There goes that theory!

    Hi Saffron - Darn it. I just asked for the soft-shell crab sushi. I didn't realise there was one with furikake as well! Enjoy the movie... and the sushi as well =)

    Oh and yes, I've had sweet potato salad with corn, but the mash was just... mash. So the sugar hit was a bit of a surprise.

    Hi m-h - Convenience was actually a big drawcard for us. Easy to get to from the city and 3hrs free parking for those with cars.

    I agree. Hot Rocks was always pretty dead. I think I went there once. I don't think it really works in a food court as it takes too long to eat (plus your clothes get all smoky)

    Hi J - lol. It's funny how foodcourts are the same the world over!

    Hi pseudo chef - Thanks. The sashimi was pretty good, and I liked the ice touch too (even if it did make the platter super heavy).

    Hi Veruca Salt - We poured the egg into the soup. Less messy. It was pretty good. I think you would've liked the tempura!

    Hi Ben - I think their use of trendy plates did help the aesthetics =) I went through a teenage phase of loving Korean BBQ but I agree, these days I much prefer ordering other dishes.

    Hi foodcrazee - The sushi is always fresher on the other side of the fence eh?

     
  • At 4/11/2006 10:43 pm, Blogger Benn said…

    Tomodachi is a god send. So often on Thursday night when the cupboards are bare and there's no desire to cook even if we had the ingredients, it's off to Broadway and Tomodachi to fill our bellies before we wade our way through Harris Farm and Coles.

     
  • At 4/11/2006 11:29 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi Benn - It is very conveniently located and I do love having a poke through Harris Farm Markets. There always seems to be something to tempt the handbasket!

     

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