I’m a bit late to the party, but Chaco Bar is indubitably excellent for yakitori and other delicious Japanese dishes in a cozy, homely Crown Street space. Taro chips with aonori are mixed with what we think are potato chips. Half a dozen plump gyoza are served in the pan – they get quite sticky to the point of exploding chaos. They’re without a doubt the best gyoza I’ve eaten in Sydney. Tsukune is paired with a perfect 62-degree egg. Deep fried calamari is matched with squid ink aioli. We get overexcited and order too much food: especially the two serves of the grilled rice ball with black cod moromi was way too much.
There are three specials on a chalkboard: miso marinated black cod, sea urchin and egg yolk on rice, and tempura eggplant sushi roll. We order two lots of each, which is probably overdoing it since there are only five of us. The miso marinated black cod comes with a miso Roquefort sauce, which adds a surprisingly funky, umami-tastic flavor. The sea urchin on coddled egg yolk rice ticks all the right marks with its creamy richness. But my favorite is the tempura eggplant and avocado sushi roll – simple and texturally wonderful.
Even though this is a yakitori joint, we somehow end up with fewer skewers and more side dishes. The chicken thigh, pork belly, and enoki wrapped in pork skewers are all goodies. As a veggie-lover, I order the onion skewer and the nasudengaku (miso eggplant). The eggplant skewer is the bomb diggity full of sweet, sweet umami flavors. In fact, everything with eggplant at Chaco is a winner.
In a nutshell, as tiny plastic figures with yellow heads would say, ‘everything is awesome.’ I’ll be back again without a doubt.
238 Crown St, Darlinghurst NSW
Yakitori dinner Tue to Sat 6-10pm