Nestled right in the heart of the popular Chapel St in Melbourne, Mr Miyagi offers a hip vibe for diners who appreciate exquisitely crafted Japanese / Asian fusion food and cocktails, as well as a vibrant atmosphere.
As you walk in, the restaurant seems like a buzzing bar playing Top 40 RnB/pop hits from the last decade. It was 8pm, and the crowd has already reached its peak, even on a weeknight (I was there on a Thursday night). The restaurant was packed and people were already in good spirits and having a good social night out.
As we headed to the back to mingle with our group of 15 people who gathered for a friend’s birthday, we were offered a cocktail menu with a selection of some very interesting Japanese inspired cocktails. I opted for the Shinjuku Sling – sweet, red and fierce – which is a mixture of vodka, passionfruit, pineapple and pomegranate. It was a delightfully fresh cocktail, and I very much enjoyed sipping it throughout most of my night (had to make that one drink last, as I was driving!)
Our large group was split across two private booths, and most of us ended up ordering a bit of everything, but 5 of us opted for the “Feed Me” option for $59pp – which is basically Mr. Miyagi’s selection of their best dishes.
As the food comes out, I will highlight some of the best dishes and then leave the rest to pictures as I didn’t actually get to eat some of the food in the pictures I took haha!
To begin, I sank my teeth into this amazing.. THE MOST AMAZING… taco I have ever tasted. It is no wonder why this Salmon Nori Taco is the most popular dish at Mr Miyagi, it should be THE signature dish. Biting into the crunchy taco, and be greeted with a generous amount of juicy salmon inside, and the flavours of the chilli oil and mayo and the garnish, it was simply sensational! In fact, I have made a mental note to myself that I will come back to Mr Miyagi JUST to have these tacos. This is definitely the MUST TRY if you are planning a visit.
Next was the Prawn and Ginger Dumpling, they may look like typical dumplings, but it was just cooked so perfectly that the dumpling skin was just soft and the filling was flavoursome. It ended in just one mouthful, but what a burst of ginger flavour and firm prawn texture wrapped in soft dumpling skin it was!
Happy’s Handroll changes daily, but it is sushi made exceptionally well. You can taste the freshness. Even the sushi rice just seems softer and fresher than store bought sushi which sometimes tend to taste a bit “crusty” on the edges because it has been left sitting and drying out for a few hours.
I am a huge fan of raw fish, so to taste this Kingfish Ceviche in all its raw gloriousness and complimented with the acidity of its dressing and different textures of its accompaniments, a good mouthful of this made me wish I had a whole plate to myself.
This is my second favourite dish after the tacos, a very close second favourite – the Schnitty Bao. Can you tell from the picture how GOOD this would taste? Not only is the bao bun incredibly soft and squishy, the chicken schnitzel is sooooo crispy and everything else just complimented it beautifully. It is full of flavour, and the chicken is so tender inside and so crispy outside, and the sauces etc made it quite a deliciously “sloppy” Asian burger, just the way we like it!
This Wagyu Brisket was not part of the Feed Me, but it looked really interesting on the menu so I thought I would give this a go and ordered it as an extra. You basically squeeze a bit of the lime on top, and wrap it all up in the leaf, and enjoy that mouthful of tender shredded wagyu brisket and all its flavours. I want more!
Last but not least, no Japanese meal is complete without fried chicken, and Miyagi Fried Chicken is this wonderfully coated fried chicken ribs that typically, I could eat the entire plate, but by this point I was so full I could only eat one! It is everything you can expect from Japanese fried chicken, served with kewpie mayo.
As for dessert, I had a taste of my friend’s birthday Pumpkin Toast and it was a delightful and surprisingly mind blowing dessert. The Pumpkin “Toast” is kinda like a cake/bread that has been caramelized on top, and the combination of that “toast” with a bit of everything else just creates this amazing sweet/salty balance of flavour in your mouth. It was outstanding!! Not your typical dessert, as it truly is almost half savoury. I love sweet/salty foods so this was a huge YES for me.
As for the rest of the pictures below, they were photographed but I did not personally taste them so unfortunately unable to comment. Sometimes pictures say many words though! So feel free to check out the rest of these food items too:
Overall, Mr. Miyagi was quite the experience. Loved the atmosphere and the service was great – our waitress was naturally friendly and very helpful. I would most definitely like to come back, although I heard it is actually pretty difficult to score a table so make that booking far in advance just to be sure. Mr. Miyagi also offers an upstairs function room, so if you’re planning a party or special gathering anytime soon, it is worth a consideration. The price is easily mid-range by the time you add them all up, but seriously.. TRY THE TACO. That is all, folks!