Azuma Kushiyaki, Sydney CBD

Grabbing a bite to eat around Sydney’s George Street and Chinatown can be like finding your way around a maze. There are many eateries to choose from and when you’re after a quick meal without a booking or a long queue or a hard-sell attitude on a Saturday night, you can strike it lucky.

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Azuma Kushiyaki

Azuma Kushiyaki is an offshoot of Chef Kimitaka Azuma, from the one-hat Azuma Restaurant in Chifley Square. Opened in late 2008, the Izakaya is located in Regent Place along George Street, one level above Assembly Bar and specialises in Kushiyaki (grilled skewers) and Otsumami (small side dishes) often enjoyed with sake or beer.

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Orion Japanese beer on tap; Komagura “Jun” Asahi Shuzo Yamaguchi sake ($24)

There are set menus which include a tasting course, a banquet and a kushiyaki menu or you can order as you wish with most of the dishes meant to be shared.

Below is a snapshot of the dishes from the Kushiyaki and Otsumami selection.

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Soft shell crab tempura ($9.80)

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Geso tempura / cuttlefish tempura ($8.00)

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Shiitake mushrooms stuffed with minced prawns ($3 per skewer)

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Duck breast with Japanese Sansho pepper salt ($4.50 per skewer) & Wild scallop with soy and homemade garlic oil ($3 per skewer)

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Wagyu Karamiso, simmered wagyu beef in spicy miso ($8.80)

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Kakuni, braised pork belly in soy broth ($8.80)

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Cream Anmitsu ($13.00) ‘Mochi’ glutinous rice dumplings, with fruits, sweet bean paste, vanilla ice-cream, brown sugar syrup

In summary, Azuma Kushiyaki is a good find. The service is polite, efficient and all the dishes are served sequentially in order of flavour though some servings tend to be a little on the small side. Desserts fall a little short with non-traditional dishes such as Chocolate Mousse, Affogatto and baked apple pie but look impressive nonetheless. A good range of sake is available by a 60ml tasting, 200ml frasco or by the bottle.

For a casual Japanese meal, venture beyond the ubiquitous sushi and sashimi and enjoy fresh flavours in a relaxed and modern setting. And when your appetite is satiated, you can pop down to Assembly Bar for after-dinner cocktails.

Azuma Kushiyaki
Regent Place
501 George St
Sydney NSW 2000

About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is a drinks writer, author of GROW YOUR OWN COCKTAIL GARDEN, SHRUBS & BOTANICAL SODAS and founder/editor of Gourmantic, Cocktails & Bars and The Gourmantic Garden. She has been writing extensively about spirits, cocktails, bars and cocktail gardening in more recent years. She is a spirits and cocktail competition judge, Icons of Whisky Australia nominee, contributor to Diageo Bar Academy, cocktail developer and is named in Australian Bartender Magazine's Top 100 Most Influential List. Her cocktail garden was featured on ABC TV’s Gardening Australia and has won several awards. She is a contributor to Real World Gardener radio program and is featured in several publications including Pip Magazine, Organic Gardener, Australian Bartender and Breathe (UK). Read the full bio here.