Today I had the pleasure of visiting O-Bento which is located on Collins street in the CBD!
My friend had been raving about this place for a long time as he quite often gets food there and so I thought it was about time that I went and saw what all the fuss was about. I was not disappointed! The first thing I noticed is how inviting the restaurant looked with its hanging light globe lights and Japanese engravings. Next thing that caught my eye was the huge menu choices and the seriously good prices. Like seriously, it would be hard to find a dish over $14! With a wide range of foods such as dumplings, rice, chicken skewers etc ready to take away and a vast fresh to cook menu I was excited!
After much deliberating because I love all things Japanese, I ended up choosing 3 pieces of gyoza and takoyaki balls (Basically octopus balls with a mix of tempura, green onion and ginger)
The first thing that I noticed when biting into my gyzo was the strong flavour of ginger and my my second bite I could taste the dance of flavours including garlic, cabbage and a pop of spice that made me go ooooh!! It was so yummy that my friend shared them with me and to be honest we could of eaten a few more!
Second was my takoyaki balls.. They were crisp on the outside and had a fluffy centre. Sort of similar in texture to potato balls. The strong flavour of fish hit me and at times was a little overpowering because of the takoyaki flakes and I felt a little weird like I was eating fish food?? All in all though they were pleasant but not something that I would have again.
When my friends food came out I had food envy as it looked so good! He had chosen his usual which was Chicken Katsu don. Served in a bowl of white rice there was a mixture of fried egg, chicken and crumbed chicken coated in yummy teriyaki sauce. I MAY of tried some of his food and wow it was amazing. The flavours all worked together, the chicken was tender and the rice was fluffy. The quality stood out from the cheap prices and left our tummies warm and happy.
The ladies serving us at the counter today were friendly and efficient and there was all smiles and name basis for their regulars (Such as my friend) However the waitress bringing our food was hurried and took little time to acknowledge us. Now I know that they are a busy eatery and it is in the heart of the business district, but a little smile goes a long way! The only other letdown was that after my friend was served their food I had to wait an extra 5 minutes. Now as we know 5 minutes on a lunch break might as well be 5 hours! Also it is a pet hate of mine seeing someone’s food come out and then having to wait for yours. Most would agree that all food for the same table should come out at the same time.. Yes?
All up it was an enjoyable experience and I would return again. Cheap eats, fresh food and an inviting restaurant!
Taking food and service all into account I give O-Bento 7/10!
Annie Bean xx