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By Marissa Ciampi
August 09, 2018
By Marissa Ciampi
August 09, 2018

When Darling Square's new food precinct Steam Mill Lane opened back in April, we were gifted with the likes of Belles' hot chicken, 8bit burgers and green tea-flavoured everything form Matcha-ya. We were also promised a new Tokyo-inspired izakaya — and now, it's finally open and dishing out katsu and cocktails with a good dose of karaoke.

Bang Bang will attempt to bring a bit of Tokyo's gritty Shinjuku district to the shiny recently developed laneway with street food and kitschy dive bar vibes. With ex-Nobu Tokyo chef Kokubo Yuji at the helm, the restaurant will offer up Japanese favourites alongside a bar serving whisky, sake and craft beer (including a house brewed lager).

The venue mimics a street-side food vendor you might find in Kabukichō, with a roller door entrance, asphalt floor, lanterns and lots of neon signs. If you'd like to take the concept literally, there is also curtained-off seating in the laneway, next to a yatai stall serving up street eats for dine-in or takeaway.

Inside, the 85-seat space boasts an intricate layout of rooms, with multiple dining areas and a hidden tatami room adorned with traditional mats and cushioned floor seating. There's also a vending machine filled with Japanese soft drinks and — most notably — a soundproof and neon-lit glass karaoke room.

The menu combines elements of authenticity with modern twists. Think wok-tossed spicy edamame, pork gyoza and octopus tempura next to pork katsu brioche sliders and a 'mega tonkatsu'. There's also a full raw bar with the likes of aburi kingfish carpaccio and wagyu beef tataki separated from your usual sushi and sashimi offerings. Plus, on the udon menu sits a teriyaki salmon version next to a non-traditional carbonara one. For the purists, there's plenty of donburi, curries and omelettes to keep you busy.

At the bar, citrus-infused shochu cocktails sit next to whisky and piña colada highballs, all inspired by the alleyway drinking culture of Tokyo. If you come in a group, you can also nab extra-large one-litre cocktails for sharing — served in a butler pump, of course.

Bang Bang is now open daily from 11.30am till 10.30pm at 14 Steam Mill Lane, Darling Square.

Images: Steven Woodburn.

Published on August 09, 2018 by Marissa Ciampi


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