The first time H and I dined at Rise was for my birthday 3 years ago and at that time I loved the cosy and intimate setting and the quality of fusion Japanese food turned out by Hideki Okazaki. Three years on and not much has changed since that first visit. :)
On arrival we were warmly greeted by the wait-staff and shown to our table of 11. Most of our party had arrived but we were still waiting for 2 others who unfortunately had been driving around Darlinghurst for 30mins looking for a parking and ended up paying $30 to park at a multi-storey car park. Note: come early or cab it to Darlinghurst.
The 7 course degustation started off with Ocean Trout Marinated w/ Gochujang Miso & Poached Quail Egg. This was one of my favourite dishes of the night. The ocean trout was fresh and creamy, especially when eaten with the quail egg.
Next up was the Potato Cream Soup w/ Prawn Tempura & Tofu. The soup was lovely especially on a cold wintry night. The prawn tempura was a tad oily though but I could just have this dish every night, drinking it straight from the bowl.
Everyone at the table loved the presentation of this next dish - Fresh Market Sashimi served in shot glasses. All at the table commented on the freshness of the sashimi except moi as 3/4 of the sashimi on my plate were dry and papery. Maybe they were left out for too long?
A trio made up of (left to right) Rice Paper Roll of Miso Chicken Stick, Egg Flan, Mushroom & Miso Red Curry Sauce and Duck Confit Salad w/ Hoisin in Wonton Cup. My favourite of the trio was the dish in the middle. It reminded me of the traditional chawanmushi but with a hint of red curry.
Steamed Scallop, Green Tea Noodle & Ginger Shallot Sauce. The boys in the group were expecting some substantial noodles to fill them up but were very disappointed when they saw the amount of noodles on this dish. The noodles were lovely though and went very well with the ginger shallot sauce. The scallop however was a tad over-cooked.
The menu had the next dish as Soy Braised Chicken, Daikon & Green Beans however I noticed that our dishes were missing the green beans. It didn't matter though as the chicken was tender and full of flavour. The size of this dish and the fact that it came with rice and miso soup allayed the fears of the boys of having to find either Maccas or kebabs to fill them up after dinner. Hehe.
Dessert came too soon but was one of the highlights of the night. My favourite was the Kahlua Infused Custard with shaved ice and more Kahlua on top. Yummy! The Grapefruit Granita was good too. It was made with a layer of jelly and peach at the bottom with shaved ice and grapefruit on top.
If my memory serves me right, I believe Rise 7-course Omakase special is actually slightly cheaper now from when we were there 3 years ago. This is a great place for quality food, superb staff and ambience all at a value-for-money price. It's even cheaper on Tuesday, Wednesday and Sunday ($45) as Rise offers a 25% discount on their Omakase course meal.
23 Craigend Street
Darlinghurst NSW 2010
(02) 9357 1755