With high seats at the bar and group seating alongside, you know you've entered some secret Japanese izakaya, where slightly inebriated Japanese salarymen wouldn't at all look out of place.
|Teapot at Mihana Dining and Sake Bar, Falcon Street, Crows Nest|
Atop the bar were plates of Japanese home style dishes that are served as is onto smaller serves, but seeking a post drinking session bite, we looked to the menu of snacks and essentially drinking food. A bit of a shame really, given the impressive bar and selection of sake on offer.
The pork filled gyoza were a fine example of their kind; their long-ish, crisp-skinned bottoms and meaty innards disappearing before they'd had even a chance to cool down.
|Chicken thigh yakitori|
Chicken breast meat, while healthier, lacks the flavour of thigh meat for the very same reason. The fat, and sometimes 'red' flesh, of the thigh provides flavours and texture while the sweet and umami-full yakitori sauce finishes the job.
|Chicken skin (back) and chicken wing (front) yakitori|
The more exotic, and almost pure fat, choice is the chicken skin. Threaded onto a skewer in concertina fashion, the simply salted skin is grilled to a fatty crisp and is just that in every bite: fatty and crispy. Definitely one for chicken skin lovers.
As we cleaned our last skewer, a small group of Japanese men had sat down at one of the tables. Straight away, a tagged bottle came out of the cabinet and cans of Japanese beer made their way to the table. There was laughter in their ruddy faces as they ordered some dishes from the bar top options. It was proper izakaya-style drinking and eating and it was no secret that the night was still young.