Thursday, July 22, 2004


This was an 'end of degree' dinner. Nice term, Dont you reckon? The only thing was the dinner was held long before the much dreaded result was out and just a week after the exams was over. I was rotting at home each day until the result arrived in my mailbox. Alright. I am still rotting at home now. What to do? I am still waiting for the official transcript to be snailmailed to me. This is a long story and let's not mention it here.

Back to the main topic. Suminoya is an all-you-can-eat Japanese yakiniku restaurant in Sydney City. It is actually a chain (is this the corret term?) amongst the three famous all-you-can-eat yakiniku restaurants in Sydney held by IS holding pty ltd. Each of them is designed and decorated to aim at different classes and age groups of people. Suminoya is stylish, sophisticated and modern. A place for white collars. Its brothers: Rengaya in north sydney offers high class fine dining (i heard there is no more all-you-can-eat) and Kohya in Neutral Bay is more comfy and homey, ideal for families and students. Japanese indeed are very clever entrepreneur. The entire population is considered.

♥ foodies date: 10th July 2004
♥ where: Suminoya, Sydney CBD

Suminoya essentially means "the house of charcoal". Yakiniku means "grilled meat" or "bbq meat". in mandarin, it is pronounced as "shao rou" or in cantonese "siew yuk" which bears the same meaning as the cantonese or hk-style bbq pork with a crispy layer of skin attached i.e. not 'char siew'. However, they are totally different thing. Traditional yakiniku is cooked on a griddle over charcoal.

We were running a little late. Thanks to the congested traffic on Anzac Parade and in the city. *yuck* It started drizzling a little when we adjourned from the carpark to the restaurant. Then we got lost. We were told it's on martin place at the Castlereagh Street end. The truth is Suminoya is actually hidden in a small alley just off Castlereagh Street and near Martin Place. Not a top location I would say. Judging by its location and popularity, Suminoya must have had some really nice food.

We didnt manage to find the place. Someone actually came to fetch us. *blush* The moment we sat down, we were told to quickly make up our mind because we had a 90minutes limit the moment we start ordering. The next 90minutes flew through swiftly and before long my stomach was bulging.

The First Round

♥ uncooked chicken and beef
this is actually from our last order
We kindly ordered everything off the menu. We wanted to try out everything and then decided on what to order more of the next round. So everything it was from entree to vegetables to meat to rice dishes to salads and soups.

♥ wooshhhhhhh~ let's start cooking!
everything was shovered at top speed on to the griddle

The moment the huge platter of uncooked meat (I am saying meat here because I had no idea of what was what on the plate), the guys on the table told the table operative (aka waitress) to bring another plate of 'this', pointing to the large platter of uncooked meat. Sadly I didnt manage to capture any image of the huge platter. Before i could grab my camera, all the meat were shovered on to the bbq griddle to be cooked. Everyone looked really hungry.

The Second Round
By second round, everyone knows what they wanted. The ordering system became a mess because we had too many people (8) on the table. My female companion and I were screaming:
more kimchee please.
more beef tongue please.
more this please.
more that please.

Our male companions (at the least the 2 who sat next to us) were in shock.
Oops. I guess I was so into the good food that i totally forgot to behave like a lady. What the heck. This is the 21st century. We female has the same right as our fellow male companions. Equal opportunities!

♥ pinkcocoa's dream come true: a full griddle of beef tongue!

The Third Round
By this time, I think I have had too much meat. Remember, i am 'half a vegetarian'. What a silly term because there really is no 'half a vegetarian'. What I want to emphasis is that it's been a long time since I devoured in such gourmet meat so my stomach is probably finding it hard to digest. It was bulging. *yikes*

This round we started ordering more of salads, soup and rice. Again I didnt manage to take much photos because the moment the dishes were served, everything was goofed down before I had time to grab my camera.
oh. You mean I should be holding my camera in action before the food came? nawww. No way! I was too busy indulging myself.

♥ entree: yukke - rare (raw) beef
The yolk was mixed evenly into the rare (or raw) beef. The mix looked a little gooey and many were put off by the look of it. I had a little taste. Not too bad. It didnt actually taste like something raw. But definitely not something I would go back for.

♥ entree: korean radish kimchee
Suminoya and its brother Kohya offers a limited dishes of korean gourmet. There are also bibimba and kimchee.

fourth round... fifth round... sixth round
We kept grilling, eating, grilling, eating until the last minute of the 90minutes we were given. The food was good. The meat remained tender and juicy even after we accidentally burnt it on the grill. It's probably something in the marinade. The only pullback was how thirsty I became the entire night. msg perhaps?

As a health enthusiast, I have to warn you: yakiniku is definitely not something we should have everyday. It is too 'heaty'. Imagine all the pimples (or acne) and ulcers you would get! All the amount of meat compared to the pitiful share of salad consumed. This is just not a very balanced meal. But I guess once in a while indulgence is ok

Suminoya all-you-can-eat price list
♥ standard* $33.80 (sat & sun only)
this includes only a selected section of entree, salad, meat dishes, rice and soup.
♥ gourmet* $38.80 (sat & sun only)
this includes whole selection of entree, salad, meat dishes, rice, soup from the main menu. also included are seafood and dessert!
♥ premium* $44.80 (sat & sun only)
this is the groumet plus sushi and sashimi

on the other hand, kohya is much cheaper. It offers gourmet option at $27.80*. shouldnt we be heading there next? *hint hint*

* drinks not included. bummer!

♥ suminoya
1 hosking place
sydney nsw 2000
ph 9231 2177
lunch mon-fri 12-3pm
dinner 7days 6-10.30pm

♥ kohya
shop1, 9-17 young street
neutral bay nsw 2089
ph 9904 5036
mon-fri 6pm - till late
sat-sun 5.30pm - till late

kohya also has branches in brisbane and cairns