Seamless Japanese fusion sheltered from the noise and activity of Tory Street.
Enoki might just be one of the classiest Japanese restaurants we've been to in Wellington. The surrounds are resplendent and the service is top notch, with outstanding food to match, of course.
Walk inside and be instantly sheltered from the noise and activity of Tory Street. With its textured walls and slick wood panelling, the fit-out wouldn't look out of place in a high-end Italian restaurant (and just wait till you check out the bathrooms). It's a whole lot more spacious than it looks from the outside, with soft classical music playing in the background to aid conversation.
There's plenty of choice to be found in the menu, which blends traditional Japanese staples with some adventurous fusion items, and we decided to get a couple of appetisers to ease ourselves in. The gyuusashi ($14.50) — rare beef slices — was the first to arrive, and talk about starting with a bang. The slices are incredibly delicate but also juicy and packed with flavour. It's a very light dish but one that certainly makes a statement; the perfect way to stir up your tastebuds.
Our next appetiser was something a bit more left-field, the roast duck tacos ($12.50 for two), and these were also exceptional. You get two crispy wonton 'taco shells' packing generous dollops of minced roast duck and fresh vegetables. The duck is tender and immensely rich, and by now our expectations were sky high.
To make life easy for those who struggle with picking their meal, Enoki has a range of standard mains ($14.50) that come with your choice of meat cooked in either teriyaki or house Enoki sauce, plus miso soup, rice and a side salad. We opted for the salmon and white fish and both were cooked incredibly well, the sauces imbuing the fish with plenty of flavour and zest. The portions weren't exactly bountiful but when the food's this good, does it even matter?
We checked out Enoki on a Saturday lunchtime and it was fairly quiet, but once word starts spreading we expect it to be bustling throughout the week. Outstanding food, a prime location and an ambience dripping with class — pretty much the key ingredients for a popular CBD dining spot.