10/10/2012 10:55:00 PM

So now we come to the final post from our Sydney 2012 trip: Dinner at Tetsuya's!

529 Kent Street
Sydney NSW 2000
Ph: (02) 9267-2900

We have a tradition with our friend An, where we shout each other dinner for our birthdays each year. (Last year he took us to Vue De Monde, and we took him to Embrasse). And this year, he decided on Tetsuya's. Wow! I know, we're super lucky! An's a very organised guy - it was at the start of the year that we said: "Hey, want to come to Sydney for a weekend in August?", and in less than a day he'd organised his flights, our hotel and the dinner booking. Wow! He says his love of fine dining started when I suggested we go to Rockpool Sydney back in 2005... looks like I've been a good (or bad) influence on him over the years!

The ambience was very old school - the type of place I imagine my dad would have frequented on his corporate card back in the eighties. The restaurant is on two levels, separated into many rooms, with the tables widely spaced apart, and carpeted floors! (I can't think of any new restaurants with carpet). Our table, on the second floor, overlooked a little Japanese garden - very House of Blue Leaves! The effect was one of privacy and intimacy, without feeling cold or isolated. The service was fantastic too, with all staff members coming across as completely capable, but also very warm and friendly. Love!

We did the full ten-course degustation (which I'm pretty sure is the only option). I obviously didn't quiz An about the cost on the evening (how ungracious would that have been!), but afterwards I looked it up to provide some context for this blog post - it's $210 per person, with wine progression starting at $95. I wasn't in the mood for a big night, so asked the sommelier to recommend two glasses of wine for the evening - he suggested a white to go with the seafood courses, and a red for the meat courses. Unfortunately I can't remember the names (or even varietals!) of the wines, but they complimented the meals perfectly, and I was happy to leave my wine choices in his capable hands!

I must admit I was a little worried about how Sandra, our non-seafood eater, would fare at Tetsuya's, but I needn't have been apprehensive. We informed them about the dietary requirements way in advance, and the chefs did a mixture of amazing vegetarian and meat dishes for her. They looked stunning and, I'm told, tasted beautiful. It certainly wasn't a lesser version of the normal degustation, and there were quite a few courses where I had serious dish-envy!

Ok, so given that this was such a long meal - seven savoury courses, two dessert courses, plus amuses bouches and petits fours, I'm gonna stop with the full sentences now and let the pictures and captions do all the talking. Rest assured, everything was delicious, made of incredibly high quality ingredients, and beautifully put together. I literally said "Wow!" and "Oh yum yum yum!" at each and every course. Enjoy!

Warm bread rolls

Tetsuya's truffle butter with parmesan cheese
The butter was so addictive!


 Amuse Bouche
Warm soup of celeriac & truffle

First Course
Savoury Custard with Avruga

This chawan mushi such an intense dashi flavour, and a gorgeous, extremely softly set texture.

Non-Seafood Option
Savoury Custard with Shiitake Mushroom

Second Course
Salad of the Sea

Non-Seafood Option
Pan-Fried New Globe Artichoke & Jerusalem Artichoke with Date Jam

Third Course
New Zealand Scampi with Chicken Liver Parfait & Walnut Vinaigrette

Non-Seafood Option
Coddled Hen's Egg with Puffed Wild Rice & comté

Fourth Course
Confit of Petuna Ocean Trout with Fennel Unpasteurised Ocean Trout Caviar

One of Tetsuya's signature dishes - the trout was amazingly creamy and tender. Total bliss!

Non-Seafood Option
Roasted Pumpkin with Pepper Berry & Puffed Grains

Fifth Course
Steamed Tian of Queensland CEAS Spanner Crab with Curd, Foie Gras, Junsai

Non-Seafood Option
Roasted Breast of Quail with Jamón Ibérico

Sixth Course
Roasted Breast of Duck with Eggplant & Almond

Seventh Course
Seared Fillet of Grass-fed Cape Grim Beef with Wasabi & Braised Mustard Seeds

Eighth Course
Pear Sorbet, Apple Tarte Tatin
We were instructed to go from left to right for this dessert, starting with the refreshing pear sorbet, and moving onto the deconstructed tarte tatin: crisp pastry shards, sautéed apple and a quenelle of vanilla ice-cream.

For the second dessert course, An was given a floating island, whilst the two birthday girls were given a stunning chocolate fondant.

Ninth Course
Floating Island with Praline & Crème Anglaise

And inside... cute surprise! Chocolate sauce!

... and another surprise of berry sauce!

And for the birthday girls...
Chocolate Fondant with Hazelnut & Praline

Aaah... too pretty! I loved the caramelized hazelnuts, and look at the perfect consistency of that filling!

Short macchiato

Cafe latte

Petits fours - meringues and macarons

Phew, we're finally at the end of the post! The whole evening was delightful - and really that's the only way to describe it. The entire experience, the service, every course, all the little touches were really designed to delight guests and create a truly memorable experience. This is old-school fine dining at its best. I think the price is absolutely worth it, (yes, I realise that I didn't pay in this instance), even for our diner for whom half the courses were vegetarian. The three of us had an animated discussion about which degustation was better - Tetsuya's, Vue de Monde or Embrasse - I was firmly in favour of Tetsuya's! Apart from my loving each and every individual course, I was particularly impressed that the meal as a whole was designed so thoughtfully and cohesively that we didn't get uncomfortably full - and this was what gave it the edge for me.

I absolutely loved Tetsuya's, and can't wait to come back in future for more celebratory dinners!

This is the fifth and final post in my 2012 Sydney Trip series. Other posts are: The Sydney Weekend!; The Bar at Momofuku Seiobo; Adriano Zumbo at The Star; Flour & Stone, Woolloomooloo; and White Hart, Neutral Bay.

Tetsuya's on Urbanspoon

You Might Also Like


  1. You're right - the pictures and captions DID do all the talking! wow.

    I can see how the Ocean Trout bloew your mind - everytime I see this it makes me weak. Loved reading your Sydney series.

  2. Ah, this post brings back wonderful memories from my visit there. The food and atmosphere were the best I've ever experienced (and probably still is even though I've been to Quay and Vue de Monde since then)!

    The trout in particular was amazing. Glad to see you had a great time there too!

  3. What a beautiful meal. I was mesmerised at the truffle butter!!

  4. *sigh* I last went to Tets in 2006 ... it was so good! I took my mum there as a thank you for my graduation... so many memories at this place!

  5. *sigh* I last went to Tets in 2006 ... it was so good! I took my mum there as a thank you for my graduation... so many memories at this place!

  6. I'm going to Sydney next week :) So you're 2012 Sydney posts are definitely going to help me a lot!

    My boyfriend wants to go to Tetsuya so much! And I would love to take him but lol we're already going to the Quay! Now I kinda regret not making a booking for Tetsuya everything looks AMAZING! And very different from what I expected hehe ~

    I think i need to start this fine dining tradition with my friends too :D

  7. Adrian - Thank-you! I can't wait to go back to Sydney.. so many different places to try! That ocean trout was AMAZEBALLS! Now I can't order confit ocean trout anywhere else, hehehe. :)

    Sophie - Yay! Glad to hear others loved Tetsuya's as much as I did.

    Jac - Omg, I could have had that truffle butter with bread as a meal in itself!

    I-Hua - Wow, you're such a great daughter! Your mum is very lucky. :)

    Daisy - Oh yay! Hope you have a fabulous time in Sydney!!! :)

    xox Sarah

  8. Ooooh SO NICE. I definitely have to make it there one day. :)

  9. Agnes - You so do! You have to try to get someone to shout you too, hehe ;)

    xox Sarah



My email address is sarahcooks [at] hotmail [dot] com.