Based on Brunswick Street, (corner with Berwick), in the centre of Fortitude Valley, there is very little not to like about the combination of dumplings and beer, particularly on a fun Friday night!
We ventured to Harajuku during their opening week- the Friday to be precise and probably their first really busy day. Although this was reflected by the wait, which came close to 30 minutes, we did not spot any teething problems, common with new restaurants. Harajuku doesn’t take bookings and you need to wait there in case your name is called out – so be prepared for that.
Once inside, the long line is forgotten as you are welcomed into Harajuku in a traditional Japanese way by all the staff.
The decor is colourful, fun and geared up for the sharing of food. There are a handful of tables towards the front of the restaurant and a rather large dumpling bar in the centre/back of the room. The bar surrounds the cooking stations and gives you an insight at how the gyozas are made and cooked.
We were seated round the bar and promptly ordered beer (Kirin on tap) and food – the wait left us hungry and thirsty! The menu is quite short, focused around the dumplings and other traditional Japanese fare. We started with duck gyoza, pork gyoza, chicken karage and edamame, between three people.
More food and drink was ordered along the course of the evening as it took a few plates to fill us all up. Each gyoza plate contains 5 portions and costs $8. There is also an apple version if you would like something sweet to finish off.
As far as dumplings go our unanimous opinion was that they were very good: freshly made onsite; full – you could take a few bites off each portion and clearly see the filling; bottom was crisp and top soft and juicy. Plus the 2 part soy, 1 part vinegar plus chilli sauce made on instruction of our friendly waitress, gave the dumplings a bit of a kick!
Service was friendly and prompt; Atmosphere was fun and enjoyable. Price reasonable – we spent $80 between 3, though it doesn’t take much to fill us up!
Would definitely go back, and explore some other dishes. Thanks to A and L for the fun Friday night!
394 Brunswick Street, Fortitude Valley
07 3852 4624