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Menya Oiden

September 16, 2011

menya oiden

When Suze alerted me to this blog post by The Hungry Duck… I knew where wanted to go for dinner!! (It was all totally last minute, hence the phone photos in this post!)

Menya Oiden is the most recent incarnation from the seemingly unstoppable Menya team. While the other Menya, and Menya Mappen outlets are known for their ramen and udon – Oiden specialises in donburi – or rice dishes.

oiden

Oiden is right next to Menya Mappen. In fact walking in is like visiting a bizarro Mappen, at first glance everything looks the same, until you realise the queue goes the other way!

Happily it’s a bit more spacious than Mappen, and even boasts a bit of “outdoor” seating – but I’m disappointed that the seating isn’t co-mingled. What happens if I want to eat udon, but my friend wants gyu-don?? Or what happens if I feel like a bit of tempura to go with my curry-rice? In my head I’m imagining breaking down the wall that separates my two loves to reveal a giant food-court of Menya deliciousness. UDON AND YAKITORI TOGETHER AT LAST…!

Or… y’know… I wonder what would happen if you just took your tray from one restaurant to the other (let’s not cause trouble)

menya oiden

If you’ve been to Mappen (and let’s face it, who hasn’t) – you’ll know what to do. If you haven’t… both Mappen and Oiden operate in a self-serve, cafeteria style. Place your order at the front of the queue, wait for it to be filled, place it on your tray, move alone to add the optional extras – before your order is tallied up at the register.

Here’s a slightly wobbly picture of the menu:

IMG_3678.jpg

The basic options are curry-rice, gyu-don (beef and rice), yakitori-don (chicken and rice), tuna tataki rice, and ebi-fry don (crumbed prawns and rice). There’s also an Oiden set available – which is plain rice & miso soup… which allows you to add the optional extras as you please.

menya oiden
Yakitori being grilled!

menya oiden

I decide to go for the tuna tataki rice with egg (touted as the “healthier choice!”) The optional extras include a selection of kushiyaki (food on skewers), and the usual small tubs of seaweed and bamboo shoots. There’s also a cold tofu dish available, as well as smaller supplementary dishes of oden and deep fried marinated eggplant – which are priced from around $1-3.

menya oiden

The tuna tataki rice is sooo good… it is soft minced raw tuna belly that has been lightly seasoned. It’s not the most attractive dish in the world, but believe me when I say it’s incredibly tasty. I’ve eaten this dish once before when I was in Tokyo at the Tsukiji Fish Market… and though this version isn’t quite as unctuously fatty as that, it’s still very delicious. I really like the addition of the wobbly onsen egg. Plus, true to its claim – I do feel a lot healthier after eating it, than I usually do after my tempura choices over at Mappen.

menya oiden

Here’s my mum’s ontama yakitori bowl – the chicken thighs are cooked to the perfect amount of doneness. We also split a pork katsu skewer – which is crunchy on the outside with deep fried panko, and satisfyingly savoury.

And everything you see on our trays came to a grand sum of $23. Not bad at all…!!

It’s no secret that I adore Mappen, and I’m so happy that there’s even more options now, for those times I don’t quite feel like udon. I’ll have to definitely come back for the gyu-don, and try out the katsu-curries when I feel like a heartier meal.

Menya Oiden
537-551 George St (next to Menya Mappen)
Sydney NSW 2000

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12 Comments leave one →
  1. September 16, 2011 12:28 am

    wow such a fast post! I had a quick look this evening on my way past. I think that deep-fried eggplant is calling my name!

  2. September 16, 2011 8:44 am

    I haven’t been to Mappen… *blushes*

    • September 16, 2011 2:59 pm

      Ohh you definitely must go! The udon dishes there are so simple but delicious. I still prefer Mappen to Oiden, but then I’m more of a fan of udon than rice 🙂

  3. September 16, 2011 8:59 am

    I’ve gotta tell ya, when these tweets started going around yesterday I was very confused, so I’m glad you took the picture showing me EXACTLY where the new Menya is. I do have to go fullfill my Mappen craving first though, before I try Oiden!

    • September 16, 2011 3:05 pm

      Hahah I don’t blame you… loooooove Mappen. Still do!! But it’s fun having more options to try!

  4. September 16, 2011 11:10 am

    wobbly onsen egg!!! yeahhhhh!

    • September 16, 2011 2:59 pm

      Yesss… have to learn how to make it!! They are always perfect every time… HOW!

  5. September 16, 2011 11:46 am

    Fabulous value! Can’t wait to check it out!

  6. September 16, 2011 2:49 pm

    Thats so cheap! Its not far from work so will have to ehad over for a cheap and cheerful lunch

    • September 16, 2011 3:00 pm

      Both Mappen & Oiden are incredibly cheap!! Hooray for more good cheap options in the area.

  7. September 18, 2011 8:16 pm

    i walked past here on friday… definately trying this .. thanks for the review mel 🙂

  8. September 25, 2011 2:56 pm

    me likey! 😀

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