I did say I was going to come back again to try Kazoo for dinner after having a lovely unagi bento there a few weeks prior and here we are. This was a special occasion to celebrate a friend getting into a training program and he specifically requested Japanese. Of course Shiranui would have been the our first pick but good luck getting a table for 8 at short notice.
If only the lighting as like this for the photos taken – for their dinner service they opted for more of a bar like feel with rather dim lighting. Our table was also close to a red lantern so all the white balance is off.
Of course, we had difficulty choosing the items given the tapas styled menu but the staff gave us a rough idea of whether we had ordered enough.
So… who doesn’t get some sushi when going to a Japanese restaurant – their california maki wasn’t anything special but a generous portion for the price ($8.9).
The soft shell maki on the other hand was a hit – I guess everyone likes deep fried soft shell crab in a roll. This will be a recurring theme in this review but I liked komeyui’s better.
Next we had the cured kingfish with pickled cucumber, tobiko and garlic chips. This was fantastic – fresh and a nice bed of salad accompanying it.
For our deep fried dishes, we tried the fried oysters – these weren’t the best I’ve had and a tad small (we have tried them at Imperial Seafood restaurant and they were bigger and better). The wasabi mayo was enjoyed by all though.
The other two deep fried dishes were the eggplant chips and the lotus root. The eggplant chips though interesting in concept were disappointing – they had a very thick chewy batter – definitely not what anyone would want and the lotus root stuffed with prawn meat had similar issues.
Luckily Kazoo’s line up of deep fried appetisers was saved by their fried king prawn – as with my lunch experience, they were fantastic. Crispy batter and served with a tangy mayo.
Next we tried beef tataki – they offer it with miso sauce or served with egg yolk. I only tried the miso sauce one but found it had been slightly drenched in the thick sauce which dominated the dish. Presentation wise it was quite impressive and again came with a bed of vegetables though.
Their miso char grilled duck had the same shortfall – the duck itself was quite tender but came heavily dressed in the same sauce. A shame.
Who would have thought my favourite dish (second to the deep fried king prawn I guess) from Kazoo would be their unagi fried rice. They finely diced carrots and the bed of rice is studded with a generous portion of grilled eel (unagi). I don’t think this photo does it justice – we ordered 2 and there was enough for seconds for a table of eight… For $8.90 I must say – if ever I get a craving for unagi fried rice (rather common) – I’d come here to get it!
So, Kazoo serves a decent Japanese tapas styled meal in Glen Waverley. There aren’t many other Japanese restaurants in the area able to accommodate for a crowd at short notice apart from possibly the teppanyaki place in Century City Walk (haven’t been there yet) so they fit nicely into that niche. Some dishes were a little over dressed and some of their deep fried appetisers could be better but overall it was an enjoyable night. Unfortunately apart from their unagi fried rice, I can’t say I’d be rushing back to try more of their dishes though.