Usually I’m not a fan of the theatre around teppanyaki grills—I just want to eat; but at Kujin the deft hot-plate work is less about theatre, and more about the food. Here the chefs are Japanese and the cuisine Osaka-style. the teppan grill is hot, and the udon are hand-made. Scalding-hot off the teppan comes Osaka-style Okonomiyaki ($18) with pork and egg noodles. Smeared in okonomiyaki sauce, highlighted with mayo, dusted with aonori seaweed, and topped with a feathery billow of bonito flakes, it is a sticky, umami-rich taste of real Osaka. Similarly grill-hot Eggplant ($14) topped with miso and cheese, tastes like a vegetable-substitution vegemite and cheese toastie—take that as you will. And while I was sceptical of blowtorch-burnished Grilled Oysters ($9) with miso mayo, they are a revelation: smoky, briny, salty and funky. Murky and gently spicy, the winter-special of Red-Brown Miso Simmered Udon ($16) showcases their pleasingly dense udon. For a lighter option the Soft Shell Crab Salad ($14) plays textures against flavours in classic Japanese style. Simple elegance characterises the sweet Japanese-omelette log of Tamagoyaki ($8) rolled deftly off the Teppan—engrossing viewing with a glass of Yuzu Sake ($8) or a frosty Sapporo ($8) in your hand. Kampai!
1/41B Elizabeth Bay Road, Elizabeth Bay
Ph: (02) 9331 6077 kujin.com.au