Friday, February 27, 2009

Wah Wah Lounge; Rise Japanese Restaurant.

13th Feb 2009
Dear Reader,

I have had two splendid meals in the past week. Lunch at the ‘Wah Wah’ in Danks Street, Waterloo consisted of a seafood lasagna for $18 while my friend had a chicken sandwich for half that amount.

About five slips of perfectly cooked flat pasta were covered with a pink, creamy sauce having just a little sweetness to its spicy bisque base. Between its layers were, from the bottom, a large thin sheet of ‘just cooked’ Tasmanian salmon, surmounted by a layer of habour prawns then of seared scallops (perhaps 5 or 6) - without the beards. The whole was framed by two symmetrical split convex halves of a delicious, tender garlic/butter yabby. There may have been some pieces of white fish as well … and the whole was a marvellous culinary symphony of the sea and not at all awkward to eat as one might imagine.

‘Wah wah’ is just down and across the road from the more famous Danks Street Depot but it is in no way inferior ... competition clearly benefits the consumer by keeping up standards while keeping prices competitive. ‘Fratelli Fresh’ headquarters is almost next door.
Shop 2
1 Danks St
Waterloo 2017 NSW
Phone: (02) 9699 3456

The Rise restaurant is a Japanese fusion cuisine with a 7 course banquet for $60 ($45 mid-week … as long as you book for 6pm or 8.30pm). Their establishment has had several previous incarnations including ‘Chez Oz’ in the 1980s. Despite its notoriety in high society, I never heard anybody pronounce it correctly (‘shay-zoz’).

Rise’s menu changes according to season and chef’s whim. There is usually a soup, raw fish dish ± oyster, pasta dish, cooked seafood (prawn in this case), tempura, roast meat/poultry, bean-curd and a dessert. Ceremony is crucial in Japanese eating so each course is brought simultaneously to the entire table while one of the waiters describes the food precisely in English with heavy Japanese accent. The kitchen is open and the ambiance pleasant. There is a garden area in what is essentially the entire ground floor of a terrace house. Its address is given as Kings Cross Heights … and after a brief walk up the hill from the Fire Station, past the old Stables Theatre, with the city lights in front of you, you know why.

I recommend the warm sake (in moderation, of course!).
23 Craigend St, Darlinghurst, 2010
9357 1755