Yokozuna located in Chadstone Shopping Centre is a Japanese eatery specialising in ramen. Yokozuna has a few different flavoured broths to choose from to go with your ramen such as Tonkotsu, Red Ramen, Vegetable Ramen, and they even had a Black Sesame flavoured broth as an option too. While, Yokozuna specialise in ramen, they also offer bento boxes, rice and udon dishes as well so there’s plenty to choose from.
The Spicy “Red Ramen” with Pork had a lovely spicy broth. You can’t choose how your noodles are cooked unfortunately and the noodles weren’t nearly enough for the price charged.
Fried Chicken Ramen with sauce (Karaage) had a lovely flavour to it. However, when they first gave us this dish the chicken was to the point of being burnt. While they did replace it with a new batch, that was tender and moist. It’s disappointing that they tried to give us burnt chicken in the first place.
The Black Ramen is ramen with a black sesame flavoured broth, it has a slight sweetness to it with the aroma and taste of toasted black sesames. Interesting flavour, but one I probably couldn’t eat the whole thing of as I found it oddly rich.
The Matcha Latte is frothy, but overly milky, not enough green tea flavour and not smooth at all as you can taste the green tea powder while drinking it.
Yokozuna is unfortunately quite mediocre in all aspects. While there are some positives, there are plenty of better choices for ramen in Melbourne and better choices for food in Chadstone Shopping Centre as well.
Chadstone Shopping Centre, Upper Level
1341 Dandenong Road
Malvern East VIC 3148
Gyoza Gyoza in Chadstone Shopping Centre is the sister outlet to the CBD store. It distinguishes itself by being more of a tapas style Japanese eatery with small little dishes, with a number of gyoza fillings to choose from and a selection of drinks as well.
While gyoza is its specialty, the other selection of dishes aren’t left behind in terms of quality. The Hot Soba noodles soup has a very clean tasting soup stock, and simply tastes fresh with the added spring onions. Subtle flavour, but has all the right elements for a nice noodle soup.
The Fried Chicken (Tori Karage) isn’t too memorable. It’s crisp-crunchy but its very dry on its own, so the Japanese mayonnaise is much needed.
The Crab claws are crunchy, not too fried and have a nice moist crab filling. It isn’t anything special, I quite prefer the crab claws in Waya in Glen Waverley just for the crab taste but it’s actually very similar.
Mince garlic and pork Gyoza has a lovely taste to it. Subtlety of the garlic and pork flavour work well.
The Wagyu and red onion is an interesting idea but in terms of flavour, it comes out quite bland. Not a big fan of it but it isn’t a disaster by any means.
While the food at Gyoza Gyoza is fairly decent, service wise it isn’t anything special and the small venue I feel detracts from the whole ambience.
Chadstone Shopping Centre
Upper Level, 1341 Dandenong Road
Chadstone VIC 3148
I never actually got a chance to visit La Belle Miette on Hardware Lane in the city since my work place is so far out. Luckily, they had a pop-up store in Chadstone Shopping Centre before Christmas. I believe it’s still there but I’m unsure as I haven’t ventured to Chadstone SC for a few months.
I’ve heard good reviews about their macarons so it seemed like a great opportunity to give these ones a try. At the pop-up store, they had quite a number of flavours, I think around 15. Some of your standard like Vanilla and Hazelnut but some very interesting ones which you’ll see below.
Here we have the Raspberry flavoured macaron, it was pleasant tasting as it had a slight tanginess to the filling with a crispy and soft inside. Nothing too out of the ordinary though. Luxbites Raspberry macaron I felt was way more flavourful and had a very nice zing (probably due to the fresh raspberries).
Here’s where it gets interesting, La Belle Miette’s Bastille has a Moet et Chandon and Blackcurrant filling which was absolutely delicious. You can really taste the champagne in the cream, and my golly do I love it. The blackcurrant jelly adds texture and berry sweetness which is delightful to eat.
La Belle Miette calls this one the Mariage Freres Earl Grey Chocolate and the tea flavour is strong in this one. If you like that slightly musty tea leaves taste (Earl Grey basically) you will definitely like this one. The chocolate isn’t too sweetness, I think they use dark chocolate or a higher percentage cocoa which in my opinion is preferable. I never really like milk chocolate all that much.
For something a little more tropical, they have a Mango and Coconut macaron, I found the mango tasted a bit artificial but I would think they would use real mangos to make the filling. So I’m not sure why it tasted a a bit off. This coconut flavour was quite nice, it complements the mango well. A tad pina colada so it’s not really to my liking.
While I was tasting this I was like what am I eating? Several minutes later, ding! POMEGRANATE. They call this Pimm’s & Pomegranate and I don’t really know what to think of it. It certainly isn’t too sweet, it has that fruity flavour but over than that I wasn’t too overly excited by it.
I say La Belle Miette macarons are one of the better ones around. I do really enjoy the variety of macarons and that Moet macaron, although is pricier then the rest is one of my favourite macarons ever. Give them a try because they are bite sized punches of flavour.
La Belle Miette
30 Hardware Lane
Melbourne VIC 3000
Chadstone Shopping Centre
Malvern East VIC 3145 (Next to Seed/Sass & Bide)
Fumi Japanese Cafe in somewhat a new restaurant in Chadstone Shopping Centre. It replaced the Seafood and Chips shop near Aldi and Sushi Sushi. Previously their food was decent, nothing overly exciting but their grilled salmon, salad and chips were large and reasonably tasty. Although like most places, salt ladened.
There is quite a large variety of dishes at Fumi, from hot and cold noodles, rice dishes and soups.
As shown above we ordered the Salmon Teriyaki, which was decent. The salmon was cooked well, still pink inside. The sauce was as you would find in the standard Japanese food court places.
One of things you hardly find in Japanese restaurants is Yakisoba. Fumi’s Yakisoba, wasn’t what I expected though. I never thought it be so green tinted? I usually find them to be darker and slightly brown in colour but taste should be the deciding factor.
It basically reminded me of a vegetable and noodles stir fry, which Yakisoba technically is but taste wise it didn’t really set my world alight. The muscles were kinda tough and rubbery, similarly, the calamari was too chewy. Overall, I felt fell flat. Passable
Their Chicken and Rice dish hardly had any taste. However, this is often the case with Japanese chicken and rice, that isn’t teriyaki. You’d find that the seasoning is barely there, however here it seemed it was lacking even more so! Soy sauce and chilli oil were definitely needed to de-bland this dish,
Fumi Japanese Cafe attempts to tackle the many Japanese dishes known and unknown to most, however on almost all occasions comes out short. I’d like to say this was a wondrous experience with amazing dishes, but it just wasn’t the case.
PappaRich fever has hit Australia.
It seems like it’s the sister franchise to PappaRoti (Update: I’ve been informed they are completely separate entities). With its first franchise opening up in QV where Old Town Kopitiam Mamak was, earlier this year. They have quickly opened up two more stores, one in Doncaster and the latest one in Chadstone Shopping Centre (Outside but close to Aldi) with probably more to come. If you haven’t guessed already, they serve Malaysian food and quite a good variety of food at that.
We ordered Nasi Briyani with Eggplant, Curry Prawns and Fried Chicken and Pappadam. I don’t think very many places serve Nasi Briyani, so it was a pleasant surprise to see it on the menu. The Briyani was fantastic, it had a very strong but not overpowering flavour, nicely cooked with all the spices. I’m not a big fan of sultanas in Briyani though, but it is a staple for most.
The Curry Prawns aren’t overly spicy, it’s mostly sweet actually and these prawns are the bite sized kind. I prefer the King Prawns but these little prawns suffice. The eggplant adds a nice spicy flavour to it to. Overall, it’s definitely a good meal, with a wide variety of flavours that all work well together. A must for Briyani lovers.
Their Curry Laksa is very different to the popular Laksa’s around. It tastes very home-made and it also lacks that huge punch of coconut milk/cream. Which is a good thing in my book! Sometimes I prefer a milder, less rich Laksa and this hits the sweet spot. There are a couple of Laksa varieties of the menu, Chicken, Vegetarian, and Seafood. I chose the Chicken version and it is served with chicken (of course), fried bean curd, bean curd, eggplant and a hint of mint. It also only has Hokkien Mee (no Bee Hoon as some Laksa’s have) so it really depends on your preferences. There is a lot to like with PappaRich’s Laksa as mentioned above, the curry soup is delicious as it retains a nice curry flavour but also adds a kick of spice. Overall, I’m pretty happy with this dish it is a definite change of pace.
You can’t go to a Malaysian restaurant and not see Nasi Lemak, here we ordered the Nasi Lemak with Curry Chicken and Sambal. I’ve got to say that Sambal is superb. It’s sweet, and my golly does it have a huge hit of heat. I’m in love, best Sambal I’ve had in a while. The Curry Chicken is slightly sweet, but it’s nice. I’d order this dish just for the Sambal to be honest.
Their Drinks menu is quite large too, here we ordered the Soya Bean with Grass Jelly. I liked this because it has a strong soya flavour but also it isn’t too sweet so for those that would like a nice refreshing drink but not overly sweet. Here it is!
PappaRich’s Teh Tarik is pretty good too, has a nice tea flavour but not overwhelming. Same with the sweetness, although I still prefer Chilli Padi Mamak‘s Teh Tarik. It’s also a tad smaller then what you’d get elsewhere, so there is a bit of a trade off.
PappaRich has definitely made an impression on me. It’s menu is full of things to try, from their Roti’s and snacks, to Noodles and Rice dishes and a great selection of desserts and drinks. Although their ABC Ice Kacang is definitely the most expensively priced item I’ve seen, priced at roughly $7 I didn’t even try it. I’m a bit wary of the portion size but also if it leads to disappointment as I think it would.
I do have to warn you for first timers that you order by writing down your selection on the pads found on the side and once you’re down you wave down one of the staff to take your paper. They then give you your receipt which you pay at the end of your meal at the receipt counter. I don’t think some of the staff do tell you that so best be warned before sitting there for minutes waiting for service.
Other than that, the service was surprisingly good. We had to wait roughly 10 minutes to get seats as PappaRich still is affected by the “new/curious” diners (like me) but once we ordered, food came within another 5/10 minutes. Pretty good actually for a full house.
Overall, I would dine again just to try their other items and it means there is actually some good Malaysian food in Chadstone, apart from Chadstone Shopping Centre’s Chilli Mama (Located in the Food Court) and Nudle (Near Nandos/Cinemas). It actually makes me want to go to Chadstone more often!
Chadstone Shopping Centre
Chadstone VIC 3148