Shonan Kamakura, a little Japanese eatery hidden away in Katherine Place away from the bustling main street. It’s small (yep, whatever you see through the window is what you get) but don’t let the size fool you. The service is efficient, friendly and very attentive. It doesn’t matter how small or big your group is, you’ll get the same service. Walking in you’ll be greeted by the bar (who doesn’t enjoy a good drink by the bar) and a mural of Mount Fuji on the side at the back.
There’s Yuzu sake for yuzu/citrus lovers (that’s ME!) and various sakes to choose from and they come in a cutie patootie sake pourer.
I’m a huge fan of nasu dengaku (eggplant with miso glaze) and this was FANTABULOUS! The eggplant was cooked perfectly and was not mushy at all (no one likes a mushy eggplant) and that glaze was on point. I’m also a sucker for pork gyozas and these were delish and oh so succulent and the bottom was so crispy. The only downside to the gyozas were the skin was a touch on the thicker side.
Nasu Dengaku – $11.80 Pork Gyoza (6pc) – $9.80
The assorted sashimi consisted of salmon, tuna, scallops and clams, and holy moly were they super fresh!
Assorted Sashimi (10pc) – $24
The fried chicken was so juicy and the outside was crunchy and seasoned so well. The takoyaki on the other hand was a touch mushy and needed a bit more umami.
Kaarage – $10 Takoyaki (4pc) – $5
The deep fried soft shell crab in wasabi vinegar sauce wasn’t outstanding. It was decent but it wasn’t a dish that wowed us. There wasn’t a strong wasabi flavour which was disappointing and there was way too much batter and not enough soft shell crab for our liking.
The Kamakura roll was GINORMOUS and had avo, cucumber, carrots, chicken katsu, salad and topped with beef. It was way too big with way too many things in the roll and just fell apart. Unfortunately, this wasn’t our cup of tea.
Wasabi Crab – $15 Kamakura Roll – $18
The tonkotsu ramen was a bit disappointing. It didn’t feel like the flavour was all there. It felt like it was missing some oomph. The egg was awesome sauce but the pork belly could have been cooked a touch longer to get the charred taste.
Tonkotsu Ramen – $16.80
Dessert is the way to a girl’s heart and the green tea icecream in a waffle monaka was so refreshing and totes AMAZEBALLS. I’m not usually a red bean person BUT the red bean complemented the ice cream so well. It was so friggin delish! The yuzu panna cotta had the awesome yuzu flavour but the texture wasn’t very panna cotta-y. It was a touch too solid and didn’t have that jiggle that would make you giggle.
Green Tea Icecream Panna cotta Yuzu – $8
Waffle Monaka – $9
The service here was top notch and there were a few hits and misses with the food. Definitely check out the eggplant, fried chicken and the waffle and I’ll probably give the ramen a miss.
Disclaimer: I was invited to dine by Shonan Kamakura and all opinions expressed are my own.
9 Katherine Pl, Melbourne VIC 3000
Tel: 0482 021 641
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