Okami Japanese Restaurant (Hoppers Crossing)
- Sushi and Sashimi Platter
- Beef Carpaccio
- Prawn Gyoza
- Eggplant salad (Nasu Dengaku)
- Potato Croquette
- Teriyaki Steak
- Miso Steak
- Chicken Katsu
- Cold Soba Noodle
- Teriyaki Chicken Skewer
We started off with the standard Sushi & Sashimi platter which included salmon sashimi and various nigiri maki rolls. We were immediately impressed by the quality of the salmon which exhibited a mild fatty flavour that melted in your mouth. The nigiri also did not disappoint and were also very easy to eat as the rice was fresh and moist, topped with decent quality ingredients.
The Beef Carpaccio which is a popular menu item was also well received by us. It was seared lightly creating a thinly cooked outer which when served thinly sliced revealed rare protein in the centre, which was moist and tender. Served with a Japanese style citrus dressing – ponzu sauce for a tangy kick and wasabi mayo for a mild hint of spice.
The fried dishes were well executed, in particular the chicken katsu which had a good protein to batter ratio (the protein not being too thin under a thick batter), and was quite meaty rather than fatty, but still very juicy and encased in a crunchy outer.
The potato croquettes were thoroughly cooked giving a soft mushy mashed potato inner and delicate crunchy outer. The enjoyment comes from the combination of those textures, whilst the Japanese mayo and tonkatsu sauce worked as the flavour enhancer.
Finally the oddly named Eggplant Salad (Nasu Dengaku) which is one of my most favourite dishes, was thoroughly cooked through leaving no raw bits of flesh and served with generous amount of sweet and savoury miso paste. I like my miso paste exceedingly and sickeningly sweet and this certainly hit the spot!
The homemade black sesame ice cream (which is limited per customer for a reason!) was absolutely creamy with a strong distinct sesame flavour. It felt even creamier than the store bought ones.
We sampled the Teriyaki Steak and Miso Steak and found that although the protein was very tender, it lacked the natural meaty flavour, which the special sauces is used to make up for.
The chawanmushi (a steamed egg custard in a dashi based sauce) had a decent bit of silkiness, however due to the serving size the creativity of the dish was rather limited. A typical chawanmushi would have bits of chicken, edamame, mushroom hiding inside the egg.
For an all-you-can-eat buffet, the food definitely exceeded my expectations.
The service here was friendly with staff efficiently clearing plates and attentively responding to more orders without being called. It didn’t take long for food to arrive, however the fried items will take longer.
Although serving was small you can keep ordering more with no limitations (only applies to the homemade ice cream due to stock level).
Would Penguin Eat Again?
Okami at Hoppers Crossing is definitely higher quality than the first one I visited many years ago. For the price of $34.80 I’d be willing to go back for an endless supply (with 2 hour time limit!) of my favourite dishes.
Penguineats would like to thank Okami for inviting us.