Azuma (Let’s Do Dessert), Chiefly Plaza Sydney

Azuma

C and I managed to fit in sugar hit at Azuma into our busy schedules during this year’s Good Food Month. This was my first time at Azuma for sugar hit, C had been the last two years. I’ve been to their Regent’s Place restaurant (now closed) for one of my birthday celebrations a few years ago and had a good experience there, so this time I had high expectations for this dessert bento box.

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This year’s sugar hit focused on kumquats, so each component of the dessert bento box has a dash of kumquat in it. Kumquats are grape-sized orange-like fruits that are only in season from August to October in Australia. They are very unique fruits with an edible sweet peel, and some can range from being very sweet to very sour in taste. I actually have a couple kumquat trees in my backyard!

Kumquat is such a sexy word for some reason.. don’t you think?

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We arrived 20 minutes prior to our booking. Greeted warmly by the waiter, he promptly marked off our booking in their schedule and kindly offered us bar table seats so that we didn’t have to wait for our reserved tables to be freed up in the inner dining area. Without hesitation, we accepted the offer as both C and I love watching what goes on in the kitchen.

We were first given a choice of Japanese Green Tea or a glass of Brown Brothers Orange Muscat & Flora to complement our dessert. I personally really like Brown Brothers in general for dessert wine and being someone who regularly drinks green tea, I no doubt chose to have the dessert wine.
The wine had aromas of lemon, honey, spice and musk, and produced a fresh and tangy taste with a “zesty long clean balanced finish”. Both C and I really liked the wine, it was quite sweet but the tangy-ness of it made it more than handleable to be enjoyed.

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The sugar hit was served as components of two bento boxes. The first box had Classic Japanese Style Fruits Jelly & Kumquat  Comport, weekly changing with this weeks fruit being grape. There was also Mochi (filled with homemade matcha ice cream and kumquat) which was delicately soft skinned and with the ice cream at the right state – not frozen nor too melted. Lastly the Nanbu Bijin Umeshu Taster (Japanese plum wine) of either blueberry flavour or original flavour. I much preferred the stronger original flavour while C liked the sweeter blueberry one more. Its never Japanese dining without a bit of sake or umeshu!

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The second bento box consisted of a Gateau Chocolate and a Kumquat Cup (mascarpone and yoghurt with kumquat comport  and syrup). The Kumquat Cup was an amazing combination of cream cheese with yoghurt, producing a smooth and light sort of mixture without too much of a soury yoghurt taste.

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My favourite desserts of the night would be the mochi and the Kumquat Cup. I also really liked the way Azuma presented the selection of desserts in small bento boxes. It brings out originality and makes the desserts look cuter than they already are, and I guess more importantly, it accentuates the presence of Japanese style while some western desserts have been incorporated.

Throughout the night, the staff were very accommodative and the ambience was excellent. I would say overall, sugar hit at Azuma this year lived up to my expectations.

– K

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