Miyabi meets mischief in Double Bay’s ritzy harbourside.
Double Bay just welcomed a trickster spirit into its fold – Tanuki, a vibrant new Japanese restaurant that promises an evening of culinary sleight-of-hand and delightful debauchery. Inspired by the mischievous tanuki of Japanese folklore, this sleek newcomer, the brainchild of the Matteo team, is a dining experience designed to surprise and satisfy in equal measure.
Headed by Chef Ken Wee Lee, a veteran of sushi e and Toko, Tanuki’s menu is a playful journey through modern Japanese cuisine. Imagine, if you will, kingfish sashimi dressed in truffle oil and yuzu, its delicate flesh dancing with pickled jalapeño’s spicy kick. Or a Wagyu beef gyoza, with crispy skin enveloping melt-in-your-mouth marbling. These are just glimpses into the culinary magic Lee weaves, each dish a mischievous wink to tradition, yet undeniably delicious.
But Tanuki is more than just its plates. Step through the threshold, and you’ll find yourself in a space as multifaceted as the tanuki itself. A sleek sushi bar beckons, inviting you to witness the chefs wield their knives with artistry. A sun-drenched courtyard, dotted with tables and a majestic liquidambar tree, designed for lazy brunches and afternoon sake sessions. Then, as day surrenders to night, the rear lounge emerges, its metallic ceiling gleaming, perfect for an intimate rendezvous over handcrafted cocktails.
The drinks, like the atmosphere, are a kaleidoscope of options. Joong Charpentier, ex-sushi e and Hemmesphere, has curated an extensive Japanese beverage program, from seasonal highballs that burst with fresh fruit flavours to signature creations like the Sake-tini, a potent blend of gin and cherry umeshu that packs a delightful punch. And for the discerning oenophile, Head Sommelier Ambroise Moriceau’s carefully curated wine list, championing natural and organic choices, offers a perfect pairing for any whim.
When stepping into Tanuki it’s crucial to be armed with your adventurous spirit. Let the trickster show you a side of Japanese cuisine you never knew existed, and revel in the sheer joy of letting go and indulging in a little Miyabi-infused mischief.
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