Monday, 28 December 2009

sake @ argyle st., the rocks

For my birthday, my friend K organised for 12 of us to have dinner at Sake @ The Rocks; a most recent addition to The Rocks precinct. Getting to The Rocks, I was actually curious as to where the restaurant was and was much surprised to find that the restaurant had opened up where my best friend got married earlier this year. What was previously The Argyle Function Centre is now home to Sake.

It was actually a little strange walking in to the restaurant given the last time I walked through the doors I was linked arms with one of the groomsmen and had about a hundred pairs of eyes following me as we progressed to the bridal table. Well this time round, I found myself dazzled at how the place had been transformed. I could still make out the venue from my last visit in May but what was once an empty space was now a bubbling, decked out restaurant. Thumbs up to the design team that created the space.

Greeted by the menu as you sit down. Usually when you eat out in a group of 12, you expect to be quite squished at the table, it was quite the opposite at Sake where we ended up having the waiter's take one of the joining tables away so that we could sit a bit closer together.
It took us awhile to get through the menu and to finally decide what to order. When K made the booking, they did suggest that we take the banquet menu but we'd decided to order separately to try a few more dishes. What we ended up doing was order a handful of entrees to share and each ordered a main each. Here's the Kingfish jalapeno - not spicy at all and was a great way to start the meal.
Spicy Miso Chips (with diced tuna & salmon sashimi, coriander & kogichun miso). Again, not spicy but beautifully presented and I wish there were more on the plate!
Nasu Miso (Grilled eggplant, sweet den miso & sesame seeds). In this case, I think the photos speak for themselves; if only there were a few more pieces on the plate to eat!
Miso butterfish (miso marinated butterfish with pickled ginger and lime). This one was actually a main that we ordered to share as my friend L had highly recommended it. After eating it, I would definitely recommend it myself.
Beef teriyaki (beef sirloin cooked medium rare, served with daikon radish, chive & yakiniku sauce). To be honest, I didn't quite expect the beef teriyaki to come out looking like this but it was a lovely dish nonetheless. This was probably one of the more generous servings out of the mains ordered at the table.
The platter of rolls! Actually, this was actually four orders put on the one platter.
Sushi Set (chef's selection of nigiri-8pcs, tamago, classic thin roll-6pcs and miso soup). The sushi is great and probably something to order if you need food to fill you up (as most of the other dishes on the menu are quite small) but I don't think it stands out enough for the price you pay for it.
The miso soup.
I think part of the reason why it took so long for us to order was that we ended up getting quite distracted looking over the desserts (well the girls anyway). Between the 12 of us, we ended up ordering 4 of the 5 desserts. Here's the green apple mille-feuille (green-apple mousse with layers of crispy thin pasty and vanilla bean sauce). One for the sweet tooth as the green apple syrup that comes with it can be tooth achingly sweet. Also the pastry isn't quite in the traditional sense of a mille-feuille so can be a bit of a let down.
Matcha bombe alaska (green-tea ice-cream wrapped in sponge & meringue, baked and served with white chocolate sauce).
Deconstructed russian cream (buttermilk panna cotta, raspberry jelly & raspberry coconut salad). If I were to order any of the desserts again, it would have to be this one.
Chocolate fondant with white sesame icecream. The fondant was unquestionably delicious, as was the icecream but I found it too filling to end a Japanese meal.
Service varied throughout the night. From being attentive and friendly to a bit scatty later in the night. Could be cause the restaurant started to fill up but then I can't quite explain why we had to ask twice for things (which they apologise for in the first instance) and well, there was the case of the overcharge. When we booked, K had to put down a deposit and this was not taken off at the end of the meal. Could have been a slight oversight but well, meant that most of us were reluctant to tip at the end of the meal.

On the whole, it was a great place to celebrate a birthday and I couldn't have asked for better company. Thanks K for organising and for everyone that came!


mademoiselle délicieuse said...

I've heard good and mediocre things about the food at this place so it's great to receive more input. But I agree, it's always the attentiveness of service that sways the tipping for me.

missklicious said...

I'm so keen to try the miso butterfish and the desserts. Looks so good!

Belle@Ooh, Look said...

Nice review of Sake! I can imagine it would take some time to decide on those delicious desserts.

panda said...

mademoiselle delicieuse - i think cos it was my b'day, i let a few 'bad' things about the restaurant slip. it's always good to try a place first yourself and form an opinion. and yep, bad service generally means no tipping from me!

missklicious - the dishes were all very pretty. let me know what you think when you try it out!

belle - hehe...i always have trouble deciding which dessert to get. if only i could order them all!