Brisbane doesn’t turn as cold as quickly into the season as its east coast cousin cities, so I was a little taken aback by the chillier nights over our long weekend in Sydney. That first evening, I hugged my Zara jacket closer and asked the SO if we might have dinner that would be comforting.
Now I know the word ‘comfort’ means a lot of different things to different people. But comfort food to me includes stir fried radish cake, steaming fluffy rice with spicy soups, slurpy beef noodles buried under a thick blanket of thick beef gravy, chilli crab smoothered in luscious bright neon orange sauce and steamboat bubbling away like a jacuzzi. A steamboat is only made even better when it’s full of spicy tomyum or sichuan broth.
Yet no matter how much I wanted to sit down to a Sichuan hotpot dinner, the SO was adamant he didn’t want a repeat performance on the chilli stakes. Instead he voted that we have dinner at Fuku Restaurant Sake and Wine Bar.
Fuku Restaurant Sake and Wine Bar’s menu is Japanese and includes a little bit of everything: donburi, yakidori, sushi, sashimi, tempura and nabe. I danced a little jig inside, seeing as nabe is similar enough to steamboat and hotpots, so I was going to get my steamboat fix afterall.
The seafood nabe was a small order and perfect for the both of us. It included one leg portion of crab (possibly blue swimmer), 2 large prawns, mussels, squid, firm tofu, spring onions and fresh cabbage. I cannot imagine how large the large size might be.
Our waiter brought over the cooker and the claypot with all the raw ingredients piled in a heap, turned the cooker on and told us to wait, which was easy enough as we munched on the yakidori, sashimi and tempura. I couldn’t resist giving the nabe a couple of pokes to ensure everything cooked properly.
Once the pot got bubbling, a waitress came over to scoop out our individual servings and then shell the whole prawns. It was a little unexpected, seeing as how hotpot/nabe is normally a homely affair where we’d get down and dirty with our hands – it’s half the fun, but I suppose being posher than the street food stalls and home, the service Fuku Restaurant Sake and Wine Bar provided was logical.
Nonetheless, it was the perfect tummy warmer and we left very satisfied.