This Surry Hills izakaya combines Korean and Japanese flavours with minimal-intervention Aussie wines.
An Aussie riff on the izakayas of Japan and bars of Korea, Surry Hills' Tokki is a fun, relaxed spot primed for dinner, drinks and everything in between.
As you'd expect, Japanese and Korean flavours star throughout the food and drink menus. A raw bar is plating options like salmon sashimi ($19) and a kingfish ceviche teamed with white soy-infused vinaigrette ($21), while the small plates might see you tucking into the likes of Korean-style pork and kimchi gyoza ($18), miso butter-glazed roasted cauliflower ($14) or spanner crab loaded into a brioche roll ($13).
There are fluffy bao ($7 each) and a trio of Korean fried chicken (KFC) options, including one lathered in spicy Korean chilli paste ($25). Or, you can go large with plates like the wagyu short rib with wild berry umeshu ($36) and miso butter prawns ($28). A couple of feed me menus will save you the decisions, clocking in at $65 and $8 a head.
As Tokki is run by David Bae of Market City's Kogi Korean BBQ, you'd assume the Surry Hills restaurant would have some barbecued meets on the menu. And it does. We suggest you order the Tokki BBQ tray ($32) — a hefty mix of beef rib, pork belly, gochujang chicken and baby pork ribs.
The matching drinks lineup spans a strong selection of Japanese whisky and sake, Korean soju and a concise wine list that focuses on minimal-intervention Aussie drops. You'll also find a mix of imported brews and local craft beers, and you can have a bit of fun with cocktails like the Merry Soju ($18) — a fresh blend of yuzu, soju, Suze, St. Germain and lavender — and a smoky bourbon number dubber Oboolau ($20).
Located on the corner of Foveaux and Belmore streets in Surry Hills — you'll spot the four bright light boxes through the large front windows — Tokki's isn't the only izakaya in the area. It's a two-minute walk from the long-standing Tokyo Bird and three minutes from the raucous Goros, so we suggest you hit them all up and make a bar crawl out of it.