Sunday, January 18, 2009

Looking behind the cover

Another one of my favourite haunts in Perth is Jun, a yakitori and kushiyaki specialist tucked away in a dark alley of the unpopular end of Hay Street. This part of town is unattractive, dreary and in desperate need of a face lift.

Jun at first glance can be quite intimidating - hidden downstairs of a dark alleyway with its doors splattered with random graffiti, you wouldn't walk in here unless you have been told of what lies beneath or have tasted its offerings yourself.

I am a big fan of the yakitori here, particularly the sunagimo (chicken giblets), nankotsu (chicken cartilage) and tebasaki (chicken wings). All perfectly grilled and seasoned with your choice of shio (salt) or tare (teriyaki) glaze.

Jun also moves into izakaya territory with its extensive menu which extends beyond yakitori. They also have a daily specials menu that highlights seasonal items, something I think is really cool. On the day we visited, we had a deliciously fruity and succulent kumato (Japanese black tomato), served simply sliced with sea salt and a mayonnaise dipping sauce. The highlight for me was tori sasami shiso maki furai, a perfectly crispy deep fried dish of crumbed chicken tenderloin wrapped in shiso leaves. So good.

We also had a few other interesting deep fried dishes, including tako karaage oroshi ponzu (deep fried octopus in ponzu sauce) and sunagimo karaage (deep fried marinated chicken giblets). All extremely tasty paired with icy cold Sapporo beer. But what I always love finishing the meal off with here is an order of yaki onigiri chazuke, a crispy grilled japanese rice ball topped with salmon flakes in a heartwarming broth of dashi and toasted sesame seeds.

Jun is a great place to come to for drinks (BYO and there's a bottle shop just a few shops down) with stunning food at reasonable prices. Its particularly popular with the local Japanese business community, work mates who come together after a long week of work to have a good time.

You'd be forgiven for not realising that there's such a gem of a restaurant in this part of town... but you won't forgive yourself for not checking Jun out for yourselves once you have.

Jun Izakaya
568(B1) Hay St. Perth 6000
Phone: (08)9221-3339


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