So I have been coming to Shira Nui or over a decade now from when my dad first took the family here for lunch on the weekend. Shira Nui is hidden along the busy Springvale Road in Glen Waverley and often overlooked by those not in the know but highly rated by locals. I consider Shira Nui to be the best Japanese restaurant in the area and still haven't come across anything better. They have previously had one hats on and off during the past years but they are always in The Age Good Food guide. They offer an a la carte menu but the best thing about Shira Nui is their 'omakase' menu in which you basically leave your meal in the hands of the very capable chef, Hiro Nishikura. They will feed you with a variety of nigiri until you are stuffed and wave the white flag - or just tell them you've had enough.
On arrival, a small dish of fried fish with pickled onions and capsicum sit waiting to whet you appetite. We inform our waitress of any allergies or dislikes. A couple don't like the oyster, I don't like the eel (unagi) and everyone doesn't like the mackerel. We are picky but this is the best way to ensure you enjoy every dish.
We start off with cod with salt and lemon. The fish was firm and went wonderfully with the sour and salty seasoning.
The seared salmon was seasoned with a combination of spices which made it delectable and just slightly seared on top so that underneath it remained raw.
The bonito fish had a slightly fishy taste but still good as it was fresh. One piece was seared to leave a crispy skin while the other remained mostly raw which was a good contrast.
Although the beef wasn't wagyu or anything in that calibre, the sweet caramelised barbecue flavour of the beef was delicious, especially so when the beef melted in our mouths.
The ark shell had a subtle sweetness to it and the texture was firm with a definite bite to it.
The tuna steak was seared around the edges but remained mostly raw and fell apart easily in our mouths. The flavour of the sauce was also similar to the sweet caramelised barbecue sauce.
Although there wasn't toro (fatty tuna belly) in that night, the ocean trout was easily an excellent replacement. The ocean trout had rivers of fat very similar to toro and was torched briefly so it literally just melted in our mouths.
The kingfish was firm and very fresh. The sauce was like a light sweet soy sauce which went well with it.
This was a replacement for those who didn't want the oyster dish - the scallops were diced up and covered in a caramelised savoury sauce and topped with spring onions.
We always wait in anticipation for the oyster nigiri and albeit, they were on the smaller size this time, they were creamy, cheesy and 100% delicious.
When we asked for the bill, we were served these petite desserts complimentary of the chef. It was a granita with cubes of fruit - intensely sweet but very refreshing.
Throughout our meal, we sipped on sake and iced lemon teas. The others drank wine and oolong tea.
Hiro tells us that his daughter can eat a whooping total of 36 nigiris in a sitting but as she gets older, the less she eats. I feel a bit jealous of his daughter being able to eat this whenever she pleases.
Shira Nui is consistently good and I can always satisfy my cravings here. It is a high price to pay as we usually spend a minimum of $100 per person but it is worth every cent. After dinner, we forewent the usual green tea/black sesame creme brulee desserts they offer and headed over to Dessert Story. The green tea ice with red bean and chocolate sauce is very tasty. The green tea ice is more like a light green tea ice cream and not creamy at all which I like and will come back for. It's nice to stay local sometimes and it's even better when you have restaurants like Shira Nui to call your local.
Will I return? Yes, I have been coming here for 10 years and won't stop, even if I move out of the area.
247 Springvale Road
Glen Waverley VIC 3150
(03) 9886 7755