You might be wondering what this is all about. Well, The Hangry Panda is a monthly food adventure which is organised by Ellephant Studios. Each month I will be sent out to a different location around Brisbane to try out unusual and amazing foods. What’s the catch? I won’t know where I’m going or what I have to try until I receive the invite!
Now that you know what it’s all about, make sure to keep scrolling to see where I was sent for my first mission! Watch the video to see my food adventure.
This month, The Hangry Panda has been sent to venture out for the amazing Omakase Course!
Bird’s Nest Yakitori Bar is nestled in the hipster suburb of West End. The location is fairly easy to get to – Just take the city glider, walk a few metres and voilà, you have reached your destination!
“いらっしゃいませ!” (“I-ra-sha-i-ma-se!”), the staff greeted as we walked into the restaurant which translates to “welcome” or “come in”.
Looking around, I noticed various seating types: formal table seating (up to four people), a big group table and an informal bar seating in front of the kitchen; we were seated at the front. As we ordered our meal, we were asked if we wanted to go for the “challenging” course which included livers and tails. That wasn’t even a question, the hangry panda must eat!
My mission was to taste the Omakase Course (eight skewers) but, I didn’t realise I ordered the full experience instead (accidents happen right) which was $55 per person for:
- chicken broth
- amuse bouche – Panko crumbed prawn with Yuzu mayo
- 30mL chilled sake
- 8 skewers – chicken tenderloin w/ mayo & garlic, chicken tail, chicken meatballs, chicken wings, chicken liver, the Italian, oyster mushroom, and pork belly (we also got an asparagus skewer which made it 9 skewers?! Oh well, the ore the merrier!)
- rice course dessert – Tori Chazuke (Hot chicken broth poured on rice Fresh Wasabi, shallots, and seaweed)
We didn’t mind ordering the full course though; ‘cause hey, the more the better right?!
To begin, we had the warm chicken broth which helped cleanse the palette. Then we had the Panko crumbed prawn with Yuzu mayo; my favourite from the night. The Panko prawn was light and delicate while the Yuzu mayo complimented it well and had a great kick to it.
Next they served up the chicken tenderloin; it was moist and the garlic on top added a great crunch. I’ll be honest, I wouldn’t normally order food like liver or tails (if you classify that as food) but, the chicken tail was surprisingly succulent and had a great flavour.
As with everything, there is always room for improvement. Although full of flavour, the pork belly skewers were quite chewy. Other than that, we also tried out a few other items on the menu (because one course is totally not enough); we also ordered the:
- torikawa – crispy chicken skin w/ salt
- shiratama – quail egg w/ salt
- tori karaage – 5 pieces of chicken thigh w/ mild wasabi mayo
These were all delectable dishes as well that are worth checking out. The Omakase course is great for those of you who – like myself – are indecisive as it comes with a range of options. If you’re after individual skewers (not in a set), I would definitely recommend the shiritama (quail egg skewers). Super delicious, these skewers are best eaten when they come out as the egg will still be runny and will just melt-in-the-mouth!
They say first impressions are everything – and I’d have to say they made a great impression. Throughout our course, the staff were friendly, attentive and explained everything quite well. They were energetic, alert to our needs, and told us in detail about each item that was brought out.
If you’re ever hangry and you’re in West End (or the Valley), give Bird’s Nest Yakitori Bar a try! Don’t be fooled by the size or the price of the skewers because each one is jam-packed with flavour and definitely worth the money.
That’s it from me this time! If you have any suggestions for my next adventure, send a private message to @ellephantism (or use the message form) and you could score a free hangry panda merchandise when your suggestion is chosen! Otherwise if you want to know more about my experience (or tell me yours) or follow my adventures, email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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