• Back to Japan through Chinatown: Kaneda Japanese Restaurant

Mid City Arcade
200 Bourke St
Melbourne 3000
03 9663 8802

I miss Japan. Sometimes I miss it so much.

As with anything, the way to my heart is through food. So when I am feeling nostalgic for the country of beauty, a decent Japanese meal is the best bet to get me smiling again.

Kaneda is more authentic than most, like a little hide-away in a towering Japanese shopping centre serving specialised food. No, we are not in Tokyo, but momentarily I could think I was.

There are many vegetarian options; bento sets, noodles, sushi and vegetarian small dishes. I am a fan of the cold soba noodles and the agedashi tofu set, but my favourite is the ‘Fried Egg Plant Set’. It comes with eggplant, vegetable tempura, chuka salad, green salad, miso soup and rice. The nasudengaku is so tasty, with half a fried eggplant smothered in miso. The tempura is also well done - light and crispy.

At my last visit, my friend and I were feeling peckish, so we also took the chef’s suggestion and had vege gyoza. Rather than being pan fried with the top steamed, the whole gyoza was fried and crunchy.

Despite its arcade location, the atmosphere in Kaneda is friendly, relaxed and essentially Japanese. A mural of Hokusai’s tsunami enlivens the left wall. A traditional door hanging conceals the entrance.

The service is polite and quiet. I always feel welcome at Kaneda.

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