Ponsonby has added a new eatery to its delicious lineup of lavish restaurants. The Gyoza Bar is a Japanese eatery that will make you question everything you thought you knew about dumplings.
Gyozas are small Japanese dumplings filled with a mixture of fresh and flavoursome ingredients like meat and vegetables. They may be smaller than their Chinese cousins, but they certainly pack a lot of taste. Whether they're boiled or fried you'll definitely be left satisfied by these little bundles of joy — although it is recommended to have them fried and served with a dipping sauce of your choice. Made with a thinner casing, the doughy delights are served crispy on the outside yet fluffy on the inside, transporting your tastebuds to texture heaven.
All the half-moon parcels at The Gyoza Bar are authentic and made with a special recipe used in Kotetsu, the gyoza bar found in Fukuoka, Japan that has been run by founding company for 18 years.
There are five flavour combinations on offer. The pork, cabbage and seasonal vegetables will go down a treat, or now that the colder weather is creeping in, try the pork gyoza in fish stock and sesame soup — the flavoursome broth will have you feeling warm in no time. Either way, after one bite you'll be left fizzing for more. Perfect for dining in a group, we recommend ordering one plate of each flavour, that way there will be plenty to go around and you can suss out your favourite.
As well as delighting us with the delicious parcels, Gyoza Bar also has a bundle of Izakaya-style tapas to choose from. Try the lotus root chips, which are perfect with a pint or two, or the tofu salad made with tomatoes, mixed greens and a zingy home-made sauce. The chef's specials are certainly a standout on the menu; the wagyu takaki is made with high-quality beef from the Hida region of Japan and arrives seared with wasabi onion sauce. The karaage chicken bites will certainly whet your appetite while you wait for your other dishes.
The adventurous drinks list certainly doesn't shy away from the more boozier tipples — like whiskey and Japanese shochu, but you can still order your favourite glass of local wine and ask your waiters for the perfect match to your food.
The restaurant itself may be petite, but don't let that put you off — after all, it just adds to the authentic Japanese gyoza experience.