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Sunday, September 07, 2014

Pasta Goma, Sydney

Mentaiko cod roe with onsen egg pasta at Pasta Goma, Sydney

EDIT: Pasta Goma has closed

Pasta. Eggs. Cream. Spicy cod roe. The Japanese affection for pasta is surpassed only by their keen adaption of an Italian nonna's cooking with a Japanese obaasan's twist. This fusion cuisine makes up the majority of the menu at Pasta Goma, opening in the last couple of months in the city.

Sushi train inside the dining room at Pasta Goma, Sydney
The sushi train remains

They've still kept the sushi train on-site, a relic from the previous tenant, Sushi Tei on Liverpool Street. A catwalk parade of sushi plates trundles though the middle of the room, but most people either take a table at the front or one of the booths that run along the side.

The menu is broken up into four categories: appetisers, salads, pasta, omurice and curry rice. It's all lovingly photographed, taking the guesswork out of exactly what you're ordering.

Kurage otsumami Japanese jellyfish at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Kurage otsumami $6
Japanese jellyfish

Appetisers include a host of snacks, from takoyaki octopus balls and prawn tempura to stuffed chicken wings and salmon carpaccio. We start with the kurage otsumami, strips of Japanese jellyfish that have a crunchy chewiness, and the classic Japanese seaweed in preparation for our carb-fest ahead.

Wakama gomaae Japanese seaweed salad at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Wakama gomaae $6
Japanese seaweed with sesame seeds

Mentaiko cod roe with onsen egg pasta at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Mentaiko onsen tamago pasta $13

You wouldn't think you could Japanify a pasta dish in so many ways until you check out the menu. The pasta section has five sub-categories alone: cream sauce, wafu, black miso sauce, tomato sauce and sesame cream.

The mentaiko onsen tamago pasta from the cream sauce section is one of our favourites of the night.

Mixing the onsen egg with mentaiko cod roe pasta at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Mixing the onsen egg into the pasta

The pasta - cooked to a pleasing al dente - is bathed in a cream sauce, based on a homemade fish stock according to the menu. Mix it all up with the dollop of spicy cod roe and the onsen egg and you've got one comforting bowl of pescatarian bliss. Don't expect an overly rich or heavy sauce. The cream sauce is on the lighter side, but on a positive note, as least it doesn't leave you bloated by the end of it.

They also offer white clams in cream sauce as an option, or you can get all Korean with pan fried pork and kimchi.

White clam and Japanese mushroom pasta in tomato sauce at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Asari to kiko tomato sauce pasta $16
White clam and Japanese mushroom pasta in tomato-based sauce

In the tomato sauce section, we go with the white clam and Japanese mushroom pasta. There's not a whole lot of sauce, the pasta just barely moistened with sauce that is noticeably on the sweet side. And we have to mention the pea decorative touches too, carefully opened so you can pluck each pea with ease. Every plate is adorned with three of them arranged in precise positions on the rim. We feel sorry for the apprentice chef on pea duty.

Chicken katsu and Japanese mushroom pasta in black miso sauce at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Chicken katsu kuromiso pasta $15
Breaded chicken cutlet and Japanese mushroom pasta in black miso sauce

The black miso sauce has an intense umami flavour. Our only gripe is that it arrives already congealed on our plate. It's a shame as it makes for some heavy going when we were looking forward to some sauciness for our breaded chicken cutlet on the side.

Yawaraka chashu Japanese pork belly wafu pasta at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Yawaraka chashu wafu pasta $16
Slow-cooked Japanese-style sliced pork belly with soup pasta

There are no liquid issues with our wafu pasta. The noodles are swimming in a fragrant broth made from bonito, mackerel and sardines.

Japanese fatty pork belly on wafu pasta at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Fatty pork belly

The crowning glory is several chunky slices of slow-cooked pork belly, succulent and sweet and resplendent with melting chunks of fat.

Chicken katsu omelette rice with curry sauce at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Chicken katsu omelette rice $19
Breaded chicken cutlet with omelette rice

We combine the omurice with Japanese curry for a maximum flavour combo. They use free-range eggs for the omelette here, a soft eiderdown of egg draped over a hidden bed of rice.

Chicken katsu omelette rice with curry sauce at Pasta Goma, Sydney
Breaded chicken cutlet with curry sauce

The deep-fried battered chicken is the best kind of schnitzel, all crunch on the outside with tender chicken in the middle. The Japanese curry sauce is thick and sweet.

Itadakimasu and dig on in.

Entrance to Pasta Goma, Sydney

Pasta Goma (CLOSED)
127A Liverpool Street, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9283 7889

Open daily 11.30am-10pm
25 comments - Add some comment love

posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 9/07/2014 12:41:00 pm


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