Looking to chow down on some tasty yakitori in Melbourne? Friend, you’ve come to the right place.
Yakitori is a much-loved Japanese dish, desired for its succulent flavours, delightful texture, and, of course, that mouth-watering sauce. If you’ve not a clue as to what yakitori is, fear not; we will hold your hand presently and, in a mere two paragraphs, quickly run you through the background of such a wonderful snack.
Itching to try Japanese street food in Melbourne? Hankering after a little bit of diced octopus, or perhaps a little tempura? Well, allow us to introduce ourselves. We are Gyoza Gyoza, and while our street-stall days are now behind us, we proudly serve delicious Japanese street food to the hungry masses of Melbourne.
居酒屋! Fans of fine food and relaxed drinking rejoice: Gyoza Gyoza allows you to experience the cultural bonanza of wining and dining in a Japanese izakaya in Melbourne CBD and beyond!
One of the earth’s most sprawling, spectacular, overwhelming, intoxicating and stunning cities, Tokyo is infinitely deserving of a place on any traveller’s bucket list, and is a paradise for food lovers. The city is home to well over 9 million people, and stretches to the horizon in every direction at once. In such a bustling metropolis, one of the world’s true megacities, where the devil can you find a good bite to eat? Fortunately for you, Gyoza Gyoza has all the answers!
Are you searching for the best spot to try some tasty tempura? Gyoza Gyoza can provide. We serve tempura as part of our east-meets-west izakaya dining experience, alongside a menu packed with affordable and delicious treats. While it may be a tad cheeky of us to suggest that we serve up the best tempura in Melbourne, let’s just say we’re quietly confident that once you’ve dined with us, you’re going to want to keep coming back.
If you’re a tempura fanatic and your heading is already swimming with hallucinations of delicious battered seafood snacks, head on over to our contact page and book a table! If, however, you’re new to Japanese food, allow us to take you on a whirlwind tour of everything relating to that most delicious and versatile of snacks, the tempura.
Feeling peckish already? Check out our menu!
Tempura: How did it reach Melbourne?
Widely acknowledged as one of Japan’s national dishes, tempura has been steadily growing in popularity for the last 250 years or so, since the early 1770s. At this time, it was sold as a snack from street stalls and at bustling marketplaces. The recipe was as simple then as it is today- tempura usually only consists of battered vegetables or seafood, deep fried. As a tasty, quick and affordable meal, tempura has grown and grown in popularity. Today, you will find your tastebuds tantalised by options such as tempura with udon noodles, tempura with soba (another noodle variant made from buckwheat flour), or tempura shrimp.
The origins of the meal pre-1770 actually lie far away, on the other side of the earth. Portuguese migrants and sailors who lived in Nagasaki in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries introduced the fritter-cooking technique to the locals, who honed and perfect the method for hundreds of years after.
The recipe is simple, yet an expert hand is required to produce the very best tempura possible – which, incidentally, is why we’re so sure of our excellence at Gyoza Gyoza! A light batter is made first of all, primarily from cold water and soft wheat flour. Extras can be added as the chef sees fit, such as eggs and starch, but these are not crucial. The batter should be mixed only for several second; this leaves imperfections in the batter that give tempura its typical fluffy, bumpy texture – which in turn means extra pockets of trapped flavour!
Now for the frying – and again, it’s a simple process. Thinly sliced veggies or seafood items are lightly rolled in the batter, and fried in vegetable oil (or sesame oil, if you’re aiming to do it the traditional way) for the briefest of moments at around 170 degrees Celsius. Frying can take anywhere between a few seconds to a couple of minutes, depending on the size and weight of the food being fried.
A treat for everyone
So there you have it: tempura is as versatile as it is tasty and satisfying. Tempura is commonly served alongside other dishes, such as udon and soba, or as a donburi, which is typically tempura served with steamed rice and soup. Of course, tempura also makes for a great snack due to its bite size nature, and this is exactly why we serve it at Gyoza Gyoza. Alongside other delicious treats like gyoza, sashimi and edamame. Mouth suitably watering yet? If so, pop on over to Gyoza Gyoza this evening and we’ll cook you up the best tempura you’ve ever tasted!
Japanese whisky bars take their liquor seriously. That’s why, when opening our izakaya-influenced establishment Gyoza Gyoza, we set out to stock its shelves with as many delicious Japanese whiskies, sake, and beers as possible. Our aim was to create an environment that captured the intimacy, familiarity and relaxed atmosphere of izakaya bars in Japan.
Becoming one of the best Japanese whisky bars in Melbourne required us to utilise our knowledge of Japanese flavours, customs and tastes, and to combine them with Australian culture to create an exciting new restaurant and bar combination. Along with our food selection, we have tried to create a drinks menu that contains something for everybody – so whether you’re a beer drinker, a wine connoisseur, a whisky aficionado, a cider lover, or you are seeking to try one of the many dozens of sake we have on offer, Gyoza Gyoza will provide.
Feeling thirsty? Take a look at the drinks menu!
One of our most popular whiskys on offer is Suntory Whisky, a premium Japanese whisky offered in flavours including lemon, lime, lychee, and passion grapefruit. Suntory is a Japanese institution, having produced delicious spirits since 1923, when they opened the country’s first ever distillery at Yamazaki. Suntory produce grain, blended and single malt whiskies, and regularly reveal new limited edition drinks and unique bottle designs, adding to the brand’s palpable elegance.
Although it may seem a million miles from life in Melbourne, Japanese whisky was initially created in an effort to recreate Scotch whisky. This is evident even in the spelling: ‘whisky’, the Scottish spelling, over ‘whiskey’, the Irish version. Early distilleries in Japan were situated at sites with an environment and climate that was similar to Scotland, in order to recreate the exquisite flavours as minutely as possible.
Uniquely Japanese Production
A key difference in Japanese whisky and whiskies elsewhere in the world is the production process. Because distilleries and brands of whiskies may be owned by a hodge-podge of different companies in other countries, the blending process may use combinations of these that reach beyond any one company. However, in Japan whisky companies own particular whiskies as well as the distilleries, which means that a blended whisky in Japan will almost certainly contain only whisky from the distilleries that particular company owns.
Since whisky’s inception in Japan, many critics have suggested that Japanese distilleries have long-since surpassed their Scottish counterparts. Indeed, today if you are searching for the smoothest, most delicious whiskies in the world, Japan is the best country to start your search - or of course, you could save yourself a little money and simply nip on over to Gyoza Gyoza!
Japanese Whisky as a Status Symbol
Over the years, Japanese whisky has become both a status symbol and a staple of izakaya-drinking. Despite its existence in the country since 1923 (and possibly even earlier outside large-scale distilleries), Japanese whisky didn’t truly explode until the 70’s and 80’s. With Japanese industry spreading across the globe and money flooding into the country, Japanese businesspeople would often end a frantic working day with a visit to a whisky bar or izakaya, where they would consume a whisky or three before heading home.
The whisky business in Japan slumped at the beginning of the twenty-first century, with the economy slowing and the consequent decline of businesspeople running wild tending to slow the sale of whisky. However, in more recent years this downward trend has turned around, with new economic success bringing with it a whisky-scented nostalgia for the eighties. In Tokyo today, take a walk through Shinjuku and you’ll once more see suited and booted individuals ducking inside an izakaya for a crisp glass of Suntory after a hard day’s work. Of course, you don’t have to travel to Tokyo if you’re looking to wet your whistle. Come and pay a visit to Gyoza Gyoza!