Fuku - Omakase and Teppanyaki
Restaurant in Perth
Japanese Omakase / Teppanyaki Restaurant
Some diners may feel that placing a kitchen work surface in front of their table and having the chefs prepare, cook and serve their dishes before their very eyes dispels the charm and mystique that a restaurant should be aiming to achieve. These people probably haven’t eaten at Fuku.
With a name that sounds like a potty-mouthed refusal and an entrance that can only be accessed once you’ve been buzzed in from inside, one could be forgiven in thinking that Mosman Park’s newly opened teppanyaki venue is aloof in welcoming custom. On the contrary, this cosy, fantastically decorated restaurant is more like a haute cuisine social club, with an outside lantern switched on to signify when all and sundry are welcome to sample their myriad delights.
Once through the large sliding golden door, we are greeted by Brett, the charming and ever-charismatic owner of Fuku and adjoining Japanese restaurant Tsunami, who leads us to our ‘front row’ seats. Three amiable young chefs are preparing their customers’ meals on a gigantic hot plate, using knives, spatulas and other kitchen tools that they keep in a holster strapped to their belts. Resisting the urge to challenge them to a quick-fire draw, I have a quick glance at the extensive sake menu, which Brett informs me runs to some 500 bottles and boasts the finest selection of Japanese whiskies in Perth.
Fortified by a glass of Tsukasa Botan Junmai sake, we tuck into the first of the evening’s nine courses, ‘Oysters 3 Ways’; sourced from Tasmania, the naturally presented oyster provides a delicious shuck, yet the crisped ginger tempura topped second and the wasabi-tinged third battle it out for top place. The otsumami (small morsels) then arrive, with a quail’s egg resting atop a miniature wagyu beef tartare, a crispy spring roll encasing a particularly meaty prawn’s tail and a pair of pickled ginger wraps with a tomato salsa and seaweed accompaniment.
These serve as ideal amuse bouches that set us up for the first fish course of sashimi and sushi; our plates are festooned with raw slices of seafood that offer such a fresh taste that we’re left wondering if we ever really need an oven at all… The tuna is a particular favourite, the watermelon-red flesh deliquescing on the palate as its ‘tough jelly’-like consistency offers a smooth and lasting flavour.
It being Shrove Tuesday on the evening of our visit, I had eschewed my usual annual stack of pancakes in order to have an empty stomach for Fuku to fill, so you can imagine my delight at the news that the ‘Twice-Cooked Pork’ comes wrapped in a buckwheat crêpe that the chef had made from scratch earlier in the afternoon. The char-grilled meat is served with fried oyster mushrooms and a green bean-flecked Japanese ratatouille, which is greedily mopped up with the remaining folds of crêpe. Seriously, this dish could have tempted Jesus himself out of lasting the whole 40-day stretch.
Unless you embark on some fairly foolhardy trips to the more provincial areas of Indonesia, it’s pretty unlikely that you’ll meet your demise by having your head lopped off and flattened in a sizzling stove to serve as a comestible accompaniment to your body, which has been fried in sea urchin butter. However, this was the exact fate of the king prawns that arrive on our fifth plates of the evening and, all-too-vivid imagery aside, it tasted absolutely sublime. Along with a perfectly seared scallop, this rich dish earned itself first place in a highly competitive race for the top.
A brace of Champagne glasses join our next course, their tart effervescence a welcome match for the sweetened satay miso sauce that surrounds the swordfish fillet; what’s most appealing about this plate is the long, bright orange Japanese ginger stem that lies on top of the fish, lotus root and asparagus tips, a chewable treat that gets excruciatingly intense the further one bites down.
It’s now time for a feast for the eyes, with the two chefs who have been slicing and dicing their way through the night to show off their flairing skills. During the preparation of the wagyu sirloin steak and fried rice, eggs are juggled, salt and pepper shakers are used as maracas and the hot plate is set alight in a carnival of flames and applause. The result is an exquisite pile of steak cubes that betray the grade 9+ cows’ lush and pampered rearing with every bite.
With the eighth and final edible course comprising of a sumptuous sticky date pudding and green tea-tinged panna cotta, our appetites, taste buds and thirst for entertainment fully satiated, we relax with a Japanese tea served in the most darling of tiny mugs. It’s the attention to detail throughout the entire restaurant that makes Fuku such a visually enjoyable experience, from the authentic crockery to the rows of sake bottles that line the walls. And once a restaurant has captivated both your tongue and your eyes, the rest of you is sure to be pleasantly enslaved.
|Reviewer's Rating||★ ★ ★ ★ ★|
|Need to book||Advisable|
|Clientele||Locals and couples|
|Restaurant good for||Couples, Large groups, Meeting up with friends|
|Cost per head||Medium|
|Dress Code||Smart Casual|
The menu changes every week so there’s no chance of getting bored with a repeat visit.
The set menus include unlimited still or sparkling water but if you want to indulge in the sake menu then bring an extra $100 or so. They offer three set menus of Good (4 courses - $110), Better (9 courses - $160) and Best (10 courses - $260).
Last updated on 20-02-2013