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Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Fujiya, Haymarket

Having seen before that perhaps some of the best restaurant finds are hidden upstairs, we thought we'd test the theory again.

We walked up a set of carpeted stairs to Fujiya, a few doors down from bustling George Street and the always-busy Delifrance cafe.

From ordinary boring carpet entrance to modern, warm and wooden decor, again I was amazed by exactly what hidden treasures lie on the first floors of many buildings in Sydney's Chinatown.

The restaurant was huge with plenty of window booth seating with unusual L-shaped benches (it must be for maximum seating efficiency--or date intimacy!). Plenty of light streamed in through the windows enhancing the warm ambience of the wood. There were open tables for larger groups as well as booth seating for families in the centre of the room.

We perused the menu and wondered why noone was coming to take our order until we noticed the little buzzer on the partition in front of us...

Aha... ring for service. We like it! Just like an aeroplane!

Kaki fried $6.80
Fried crumbed oysters

Tori karaage $6.80
Japanese-style fried chicken

Tempura udon $8.80

Unaju $8.00
Grilled eel on rice

Overall the food here was fairly reasonable. The oysters were not quite as briney as I normally like but the coating was crunchy and crisp. I found the karaage a little greasy but the tempura was light and fluffy, and the eel was tender and tasty.

We couldn't have closure without dessert so I elected for the matcha ice cream which arrived with a dollop of adzuki red bean paste. Perfect closure!

Matcha green tea icecream $3.80

The restaurant was busy with students, families and a couple of work gatherings. Some of the dishes weren't out of this world, but there are probably some hidden gems which we are yet to uncover. I appreciated the light and airy atmosphere most, and could envision this as an easy choice for good-value group meals.

Fujiya Japanese Tavern Restaurant
Level 1, 605 George St (entrance on Goulburn St), Haymarket
Tel: 02 9283 2268
12 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (AugustusGloop) on 1/11/2005 11:59:00 pm


  • At 1/13/2005 4:38 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The prices here really look reasonable for a Japanese restaurant. I had thought that Jap food would be rather pricey in Sydney, especially in such a cosy ambience. I also like that they serve the tempura separately, not on the udon which would otherwise have made the tempura soggy.


  • At 1/13/2005 8:51 am, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I too have been here and was surprised at its easy on the eye decor, the food was passable and I was amused by the patrons who had yet to discover the Buzzer!


  • At 1/13/2005 12:28 pm, Blogger pinkcocoa said…

    Hiya AG
    I remember that buzzer when we were at Fujiya! We didn't use it though for fear something strange might happen! Should have post about Fujiya last year but been extremely lazy in doing so! :p

  • At 1/13/2005 3:19 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi Julia - Japanese food can be expensive, but there are always great finds in Sydney, especially in Chinatown! I'm convinced that there are numerous hidden treasures on the first floor of Chinatown buildings--I just have to learn to follow the gastronomically and economically-savvy Asian uni students!

    And yes I agree with you about separating the tempura from the udon soup. I'm always tempted to whisk it out and put it to the side... ok ok sometimes I do do that!

    Hi Sue - Yeah it's amazing how you should never judge a restaurant by its stairwell! And the buzzer was definitely st range at first, but infinitely practical.

    Hi pinkcocoa - I'm sure that one day I will look above the lens of my camera as I'm photographing my meal and spot you one day :-) We should have a Sydney foodbloggers yumcha! Email me if you are interested...

    As for the buzzer, yes I was a little intimidated at first but hey, that's what it's there for. At least you don't have to look like an idiot waving your arm in the air.

  • At 1/13/2005 4:18 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Am interested in the Yum cha. And a note on the tempura udon seperation. I am actually a fan of the tempura sitting on top, I like the texture of the melting deep fried goodness descending into the soup. Its a quick moment in time though that must be savoured, like a tempura slam!

  • At 1/14/2005 7:51 pm, Blogger Reid said…

    Hi AG,

    The prices here look quite reasonable. The unagi would probably be my favorite followed by the matcha ice cream. =) I don't think that I can get Japanese food that cheap here. =(

  • At 1/16/2005 4:01 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi R - Ahhh yes, why doesn't it surprise me that you like to eat with adrenalin!

    Hi Reid - Yes we are truly lucky in Sydney that we have access to such a wide range of good quality food at such low prices. And yes I ordered the unagi and the matcha!

    Can you buy frozen unagi in Hawaii? I recently discovered this at an Asian supermarket, which I took home, defrosted, then pan-fried with a little extra thick sweet soy. Tasted just like the shops (and I have heard that many shops do do this, as making unagi from scratch is notoriously difficult).

    We had this with my first attempt at chijimi/pajeon (which was a relative success) and followed this with matcha (store-bought--I've yet to try making it myself).

    Sydney is cheap, but then again, that's why travelling overseas is so mortifyingly expensive for us too (outside of SE Asia)!

  • At 1/18/2005 5:15 am, Blogger Andrew said…

    That unagi looks fucking fantastic.

  • At 1/18/2005 11:22 am, Blogger Ms One Boobie said…

    The food look so yum!!! thanks for sharing your experience.. i'll remember to visit this place.. the next time i'm back in sydney.. :)

  • At 1/19/2005 8:16 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi Andrew - The unagi was pretty tasty. And that was the small portion too!

    Hi MrsTweety - Yep, you'll need to eat your way down Goulburn, Dixon and Sussex Streets. Let me know if you need someone to give you a hand! :P

  • At 1/27/2005 12:03 pm, Blogger Ms One Boobie said…

    Hey..AG.. :)
    Definitely need a makan-kaki.. when i'm next in Sydney.. ;)

  • At 1/28/2005 9:00 pm, Blogger Helen (AugustusGloop) said…

    Hi MrsTweety - sounds great. Have stomach. Will travel :P


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