Food and Drink
Posted by Dan Kuseta
22. Jun, 2012
I don’t know why, but I really like things with two same names: yo-yos, bonbons, pawpaw, taun tauns, sucky sucky – almost everything you can think of is good, OK except Wagga Wagga. So admittedly I went in a little biased to Nama Nama, the spanking new Japanese cafe at the top end of Flinders Lane.
Simon Denton ran Verge on this plum spot for a decade before redesigning the space for Nama Nama (Japanese for fresh). And fresh it is. When you walk in the staff greet you, Izakaya-style and natural light seems to whoosh into the place. There’s a big serving bar filled with Japanese goodies and comfy seats by the window overlooking Fitzroy Gardens. The place has good feng shui.
The fresh theme continues to the menu – where the star of the show is the house made udon with Kanto style broth ($15). Denton, who also owns Izakaya Den, has brought over the chef who’s apparently something of an udon specialist, and it shows.
Served in a hand made bowl and chock full of goodies like pork, spinach and quail egg, the soft, house made noodles make this a fantastic winter dish. There’s no spoon so slurping’s mandatory. It tasted even better when paired with a warm Daimyo sake.
The other nifty thing are the bento boxes, which you can pick and mix from a range of stuff like tofu salad, Japanese pickles, poached duck, salmon sashimi and more. Bento buff can also join the ‘Bento Club’ where you get to take away your lunch in custom made, wooden bento boxes – which besides looking awesome save on waste.
Up back there’s a small store where you can buy sake and other Japanese knick knacks, while next week Nama Nama will be serving a breakfast men of Nama katsu buns, breakkie bentos and house made Japanese cake.
Oh, and they’ll be opening up their own Izakaya, Hoshu, next week too.
1 Flinders Lane, Melbourne
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