So Friends of the Fridgers, How do you like to to spend your Sundays? We have experienced some glorious sunny days in the last two weekends here in Sydney! What better way to spend Sunday in a sun filled courtyard kicking back with some midday drinks and great food? Last week we found ourselves heading to Glebe counting down to miday. Our mission was to visit Toku Toku, a relatively new Wine and Sake bar on Glebe Point road. Named after the sound that sake glasses make after it is poured into your glass ("toku toku, toku toku, toku toku") the midday countdown was by all means necessary - its only socially acceptable to drink after 12 right?
We start off (mind you, this was before we had any breakfast..) with 2 glasses of Umeshu, A sugary sweet Japanese plum wine that is super refreshing when poured over ice. Umeshu has to be one of my favourite drinks and yes I am also partial to any of the Japanese clear spirits. There is a lengthy list of Sake and Wine as one would expect from an Izakaya, and a local Australian Sake variety was also on offer. I didnt get a chance to study the drinks menu, being fixed on the food on offer of course...
Toku Toku is located on Glebe Point road next to the Primary School and if you are familiar with the area on weekends this is where the Markets are held. Like I could ever say 'no' to a beanie with a penguin head!! The staff tell us that not many people realise that there is courtyard seating out back complete with a little footbridge over little koi fish pond. The sun filled area is quite the oasis and the empty wine and sake bottles decorating the space adds a fun reminder of where we were (and what we were there for ;) )
We start with the Popcorn Prawn ($19) a dish that was very hard to ignore from the menu. We have tried and loved a similar dish previously at Sake where they used shrimp, this Toku Toku version uses huge crystal prawns. The juicy prawns are lightly battered and coated with a creamy yet tangy kim chi mayonnaise - a homage to the Korean background of the owners.
Does it come as a surprise that I ordered something green? The Soyu Cabbage Salad ($14) was a dish I could not resist from the menu and it also came highly recommended by our helpful waitress. This braised cabbage was dressed in light white truffle vinigarette. The tangyness penetrated through all the cabbage layers and the toasted garlic and walnuts provided a little crunch. The truffle flavour was not overpowering and with half a head of cabbage to get through between two people - we definitely ate our share of greens that day.
Toku Toku Chicken ($16)
The sticky sweet teriyaki sauce mixed with more creamy japanese mayonnaise was a winner with the big chunks of Chicken. This was my favourite dish but it hindsight a small bowl of rice would have gone perfectly with it. The portions were quite generous for two people, as were the other two dishes we ordered. As with other tapas style restaurants,I suppose that it would have been better to come here with a larger group of people to split the dishes and get a bit more variety. We were definitely full after the three plates.
Tempura Mars Bar ($7)
That being said though, you can't deny me a deep fried dessert. They only serve you 3 pieces of these deep fried super gooey mars bar chunks because it would be almost immoral if you had any more. The tempura shell is very light and encases a warm and chewy chocolate hit. Because they don't go the "lets bury this with icing sugar" route its not actually too sickly sweet. The strawberry? Well, it serves no purpose other than distracting the other half when you cheekily steal the last mars bar piece
This was an experience that would have been better shared with a larger group of people as there was quite a variety of dishes to try. Although what we ordered was on the more reasonable side of the menu, I couldn't help but feel that most of what was on offer was on a higher price bracket. Since the portions are quite large it would be better spread over a large group. It was only Demos and I out for lunch and we never really thought of Glebe to be an expensive area to eat in so relatively, we did feel that the dishes were a bit on the pricey for the area. Maybe we were just being greedy guts and wanted to order everything on the menu!
I do think that it is a welcome addition to the area and we would most likely come back to get acquainted with the sake list and bring some friends to share the delicious food with. Toku Toku is a fun and fancy offering in Glebe - with a stylish space inside and the courtyard - but I'd suggest going at night and really make an enjoyable occasion out of the visit! Get some Toku Toku Sake pouring sounds going on!Toku Toku - 36 Glebe Point Road (right next to the Glebe Primary School)