Kūrumac, the Japanese translation of Kirribilli sister cafe Cool Mac, has arrived in Marrickville serving up Japanese comfort food for breakfast and lunch. Business partners Eugene Leung and Dika Prianata have decorated their new inner west cafe with a colourful mural from local artist collective Ar-chive, which celebrates both old and new Japan by combining a traditional food stall with a vending machine selling gyoza, bonsai and sneakers.
This melding of old and new is a carried throughout the rest of Kūrumac, too. "It's a modern space, but the food is home-cooking," explains Leung.
Cooking the food is Cool Mac Chef Junichi Okamatsu, who's serving up twists on some of his favourite childhood dishes, such as the udon bowl ($19), which was inspired by a dish from his home in Yatsushiro. The noodles sit in a hot tasty broth topped with wagyu beef and sesame, and are served with a side of crispy fried shrimp. It's not what you'd normally find on an inner west cafe's breakfast menu, but that's exactly what Kūrumac is all about. As Leung says, the team wants to make food that Japanese locals "would get served for breakfast by their parents".
The spicy cod roe piped onto classic thick-cut Japanese white bread, topped with cheese and grilled ($11), is another winner from the menu. As is the thick-cut toast topped with a mountainous pile of curried scrambled eggs and tempura prawns ($19). For lunch, from 11am, you can grab something a little greener, such as the seared salmon, avocado and yuzu kosho — a spicy and citrusy condiment — salad ($18) or the tempura eel with rice and a hot green tea broth ($23).
During Sydney's long hot days, the cafe has you sorted with loads of cooling Japanese drinks, including iced mugicha (a barley tea, $4); green tea or hojicha (a roasted Japanese tea) milkshakes ($9.5) made with gelato from Newtown's MaPo; and Ume Burger's house-made sodas.
Be sure to keep an eye out for an upcoming ramen collaboration with Rising Sun Workshop, too. Dates and details are still up in the air, but we'll let you know when they're confirmed.
Images: Kimberley Low
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