Yebisu is located in an area named Tokyo Street in Regent Place, a shopping and dining hub along George Street. You won’t miss Regent Place, since it’s only a few feet away from Sydney Town Hall. This Japanese restaurant’s nostalgic interiors will take you back to 1980’s Japan.
Retro-inspired casual Japanese dining
Rectangular fascia with old style calligraphy, oval lanterns, and spacious rooms with shoji paper screen windows are all reminiscent of a 1980’s atmosphere in Japan.
The area named “Tokyo Street” in Regent Place has many Japanese shops like Chanoma Café, Tenkomori Ramen House, and Uncle Tetsu’s Cheese Cake. Yebisu is located at the end.
The entrance is bright and wide, it feels so welcoming, and the inside is so spacious and makes you feel at ease. No wall between the tables makes you feel free to talk to anyone sitting next to you. The atmosphere is very friendly, raucous and open.
Another Japanese restaurant located just on the other side of George Street, is Mizuya. The atmosphere in this place is chill, calm, and good for enjoying low-key group chats.
Yebisu and Mizuya restaurants are both casual, so you can choose which atmosphere you like.
As you can see from the varied sake bottles on the wall, they love sake.
Choose the best sake from the tasting cart
A bell rang in Yebisu. I looked around the restaurant, then I saw a cart with a lot of sake bottles. It was a sake tasting cart. A server rings the bell whenever someone orders.
There are ten different kinds of sake inside the cart. The server comes to ask your preference: dry, sweet, or fresh, then she tells you what she recommends and gives you some sake for tasting.
According to the staff, “Ura Gazanryu” is the most popular sake in Yebisu. It tastes dry and light, with an elegant and fresh, fruity aroma which goes well with starter dishes like salad or sashimi.
We ordered “Taka” ($29.5/300ml) and “Hakkaisan” ($30/300ml). One of my friends from Chile said “It is just like water”. He loves pisco, one of the popular spirits made in South America. For him, sake is more water compared to pisco. Actually, sake does not contain as much alcohol as spirits, which makes it more similar to wine.
Share and try many kinds of Japanese Izakaya dishes
Izakaya(ee-zah-ka-yah) is a casual place for drinking and eating in Japan. There, dishes are provided in small portions like Spanish tapas so that you can enjoy pairing alcoholic beverages with a variety of food. It is usually affordable, to encourage people to come and enjoy sake almost every day. Yebisu is a typical Izakaya style restaurant. They serve many basic Izakaya menu items.
We tried the following dishes in Yebisu:
Silver Fish & Three Kinds of White Radish Salad ($12.8) comes with plum dressing. Taste the dressing first before using a lot, especially if you have never tried Japanese plum before. It is sour. The dish is topped with Japanese pickles made from radish.
Stewed Wagyu Tendon ($6.8) is a soy-based sweet sauce. My Chilean friend said it tastes just like “Cazuela”, a typical South American chili dish.
The Pork Gyoza ($8.8) was blistering. The server poured the sauce in front of us and it started sizzling. You can choose whether you want a Teriyaki sauce or a Ponzu sauce. This is a fusion dish.
The greatest dish I ate in Yebisu was the Grilled Mackerel ($12.8). It goes well with dry sake.
Aburi Mix Sushi ($14.8) was also good for a fusion dish. It came with mayonnaise and sweet soy sauce which we don’t normally use for sushi.
Yebisu is the best place to hang out with your friends and try sake! They serve affordable fusion Japanese dishes, so it might be good for your friends if they aren’t familiar with classic Izakaya dishes.
Make sure you get a reservation if you don’t want to miss the sake tasting car. It starts around 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm.
Yebisu means the name of a god in Japan. It is said that there are seven fortune gods in Japan, and Yebisu is one of them. He represents fishing, thriving business, and a becoming smile.
I hope people who come to Yebisu will be full of smiles, and abundant sake will bring this restaurant success!
Location: Shop 7-10, 501 George Street, Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia
Open: Sun – Wed 12pm – 11pm / Thu – Sat 12pm – 11:30pm