Fuyu exceeds own lofty reputation
WALKING into Fuyu, David Coomer’s latest modern Asian offering and the newest incarnation of his restaurant space on Stirling Highway, I had no expectations.
I never had the privilege of dining at Star Anise or Pata Negra and so everything I knew about this man’s talents was through pure hearsay. But boy did everyone rave about his food.
And if Fuyu’s Instagram and Facebook page are anything to go by, the menu is always going to be exciting.
In fact, Coomer has been down at his farm in Manjimup busy hunting truffles with his dogs Olive and Hazel (okay, maybe not so much Hazel) and is hosting a Truffle Dinner at Fuyu tonight for $95 per person.
“It’s all Asian flavours and we’re keeping it simple. We’ve got a couple of dumplings, really simple sushi with black truffle, steamed scallops, and marron with miso and truffles,” Coomer said.
But back to the night we were there. It was all black ceilings, black walls, black plates, black chopsticks and dark timbers. So a cocktail felt just perfect and the Old Maid, a concoction of Plymouth gin, Alvear Fino, cucumber, mint and lime, set the tastebuds singing.
The menu at Fuyu naturally lends itself to sharing, broken down into snacks, plates and sweets. There’s also a FuMe option, where for $75 per person, the whole table is fed by the chefs.
Our night began with a medley of bite-sized teasers including the octopus with kimchi and Sriracha atop an ink biscuit, the gelatinously smooth pig’s head katsu topped with picked cabbage, a slice of chilli and sesame, as well as halfshell scallops balanced delicately on slices of pineapple and portions of caramelised duck neck.
But it was the beef tartare that got me going. Rough, hand-chopped skirt steak that was delicately moist mixed in with a seasonal selection of Asian herbs including shiso and rice paddy herb and crumbly salt-cured duck egg yolk. Thin slivers of extra yolk were added on top. And then there’s that bright red cracker.
“I wanted something crispy as well in it and my sous chef Tim suggested using beetroot in the cracker. I thought it was a bit of a stretch (laughs) – I was thinking a prawn cracker for a fishy flavour – but now you get a sweet roasted root vegetable flavour and the colour’s pretty vibrant as well,” Coomer said.
I was hooked. And so is Coomer, it seems.
“I love Fuyu. I was missing Asian cooking and there was a bit of boredom. I wanted to do something different and something more fun and that’s what this is,” Coomer said.
If the man so exalted for his deft hand at Asian flavours calls this fun, I’m stoked the fun has just begun.
For more information about tonight’s Truffle Dinner, call 9389 5517.
Beef tartare with Vietnamese herbs and an Old Maid cocktail (top) and scallop with duck neck (above).