My very first trip to Sydney was back in 2007, when I came to Sydney for a short holiday with my cousin who was scoping out the potential of doing a short-term work secondment in Sydney. In 2008, I returned on a trip to visit her while she did her secondment. One of the restaurants she took me to on my second trip was Sushi Tei, all the while swearing up and down that “Sushi Tei is the best sushi restaurant in Sydney, I go there all the time!”.
Now that I actually live in Sydney and eat out more than frequently at many different restaurants, I couldn’t say with this level of certainty that Sushi Tei is the best sushi restaurant in Sydney. I can say however, that it always guarantees you a good meal at a reasonable price. I even took my parents here when they visited me in 2012 and they both enjoyed it – and that is high praise indeed!
K and I visited Sushi Tei in Chifley Square late one evening after we’d been wandering the streets looking for somewhere to eat. I was feeling particularly picky and turned down all his suggestions before deciding that going back to an old favourite was the way to go.
We decided to split two dishes for a bit of variety. The first was their soba noodles with edible wild plants which I think many people might struggle with as the ‘wild plants’ are a strange mix of sourness, chewiness, stringiness, and other less-than-usual flavours and textures. As someone who grew up with these kinds of unidentifiable plants in my diet though, I really enjoyed this dish with the al dente noodles and the clear broth.
We splashed out and ordered the Aso platter to share as well, with thirteen different varieties of nigiri and sushi rolls. My pick was the scallop sushi – it’s rare to find raw scallop nigiri, and it’s a real treat when you do. I also enjoyed the sweet beancurd sushi, while K enjoyed the unagi nigiri.
While the hand roll is traditionally the most ‘basic’ or ‘boring’ option on any sushi platter, I like how Sushi Tei makes their version a little more complex by rolling it in nori (seaweed) flakes and sesame seeds that add an interesting crunch. It’s little things like that that distinguish them from other sushi restaurants.
Sushi Tei is really an old favourite that I can always count on to deliver a decent, satisfying meal. They do a fantastic sea urchin gunkin which I’ve ordered in the past – it’s well worth trying if you ever go to Sushi Tei!