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12° & CLOUDY ON TUESDAY 21 MAY IN WELLINGTON
By Jonathan Brumley
June 26, 2018
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Teppan Hayashi

This new addition to Press Hall serves fresh and flavoursome teppanyaki.
By Jonathan Brumley
June 26, 2018
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Just when you thought Press Hall couldn't get any better, Teppan Hayashi has arrived to serve up some mean teppanyaki. Located on the second floor of the bustling precinct, the lush restaurant is removed from the downstairs hustle. This removal makes it the perfect place to cure your 3.30-itis in peace or accommodate your ever-important lunch meeting. Get ready folks, Teppan Hayashi is coming in hot.

Walking in, you'll be welcomed with minimalist Japanese decor, the sound of light chatter and the aroma of sizzling fresh produce. Take a seat at the bar and be entertained by the insane teppanyaki techniques of the talented chefs, or relax at one of the more private tables. Either way, order a green tea (or sake) and explore the offerings of sashimi, tempura, grilled fish and grilled wagyu.

Head Chef Kazutoshi Nomura brings a decade of culinary experience with him. The result? Divine Japanese cuisine with a distinct Kiwi twist. We couldn't decide on just one dish, so we had to opt for both the teppanyaki scallop and chicken offerings. Both of these came as full lunch meals. The scallops were plump and juicy, while raw cuts of salmon and tuna served as refreshing palate cleansers. A generous bowl of rice allowed us to soak up every rich drop of juice while tangy pickled vegetables made our tastebuds sing. Served with a simple side salad, quick-cooked broccoli and a ramekin of corn, this is how lunch should be done.

The chicken was just as wonderful. Think sensationally seasoned teriyaki chicken that oozed with flavour while streaks of sweet and smoky barbecue sauce provided a complementary caress of zing. As with the scallops, the side salad, broccoli and corn acted as great refreshers, but lo and behold, the karaage stole the show. Nothing beats karaage, in my opinion. It has its own distinct flavour, it's always crispy and moist, and it's bite-sized so you can eat as much as you want without the guilt (that's how it works, right)? This karaage ticked all of these boxes and the quintessential Japanese mayonnaise was the icing on the cake, well, the mayo on the chicken.

What I enjoyed most about Teppan Hayashi was how fresh the ingredients were. The broccoli looked like it had just been picked and I could taste the ocean in the scallops. Everything was prepared fresh, right under our noses, and this is what separates Teppan Hayashi from many other "food court" establishments.

Expect an experience that's fun, fresh and full of flavour.

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