Ante introduces the traditional Japanese “Jazzu Kissa” to King Street with 60 varietals of sake and 2,500 vinyl records.
If you’ve ever walked the streets of Tokyo, you’ll know it’s not uncommon to stumble across a bustling vinyl bar. An impressive selection of records are usually displayed adjacent to the bar and the natives perch up for hours listening, sipping sake and snacking on yakitori and takoyaki. Owners Matt Young (founder of Black Market Sake and ex-sommelier at Fratelli Paradiso & 10 Willam St) and Jemma Whiteman (ex- Pinebone, Billy Kwong & Lankan Filling Station) have set out to emulate this culture in the heart of Newtown. Ante has just opened on King Street with a 60 strong sake list, Young’s very own collection of 2,500 vinyl records and a delectable Asian meets European food menu executed by Whiteman.
The bar focuses on pouring the finest jumai sake which is the equivalent of minimal intervention wine in the sake sector. Sourced by Young directly through Black Market Sake, it’s safe to say the man knows a thing or two about how to drink this Japanese spirit. Perch up to the bar and let your education begin as you taste your way through a flight of sakes tailored to your palate.
Whiteman has designed the food menu around dishes that carry the unique flavours of sake. With her background in Asian and Sri Lankan cooking, expect to see these signature flavours across the menu. Dishes with wobbling bonito flakes have been hinted at, as well as tagliatelle with shiitake which reflects on Whiteman’s time behind the kitchen at Mr. Loquor’s Dirty Italian Disco. You can also expect to see Kare Pan, which is Japanese curry bread that you can typically find in convenience stores.
Ante features an intimate bar that reaches from the entrance to the open-style kitchen where you can watch the chefs at work. Perch up as you watch the bartenders select their favourite records and pour you a drink.
Ante is open Thursday to Friday from 5pm and Saturday & Sunday from 12pm with a walk-in only policy. Follow them on IG here