367 Brunswick St
Fitzroy, 3065
9415 6099

It was a Sunday evening – with the parents absent, the house was void of homely food and full to the brim with amotivation to cook. We flipped through the cheap eats book landing us on a two star Japanese restaurant – Yume, which was coincidentally also in the entertainment book. This is sure going to be a cheap meal! Though there was no struggle to find parking, Brunswick Street was still buzzing with people for a Sunday. Walking passed the place, I warned my sister that quiet places are not to be meddled with – rule #1 of dining: never eat at places that are suspiciously empty when nearby places are full. Losing out against our inherent ‘cheapness’, we went ahead and took a small table against the wall of this cosy eatery, decorated with splashes of origami and geisha paintings.

Ok, I’ll get the negatives out of the way before writing about the nicer aspects of this place. A number of minutes after ordering we were informed that there was no edamame and no sushi rice. Are you for real? No sushi rice in a Japanese restaurant? This was followed with an atrocious salad… well I thought it was atrocious anyways =P.


Japanese salad – mountain vegetables, basil & sesame dressing.

I ordered this dish on the preconception (and assumption) that it would be a thick ‘goma’ dressing that would coat the vegetables in roast’y sesame. But, though the greens were fresh and juicy, I was disappointed to discover this was literally a watery basil and sesame dressing, which was rather bland, hardly acidic, and barely discernable sesame. ARgh!

Oyako don – chicken, egg, green onion on rice.

Presented in a large and heavy ceramic bowl, this looked promising. Soft gooey egg, crunchy slices of green onion, and succulent pieces of chicken coated in a ‘generous’ sauce infused with the sweetness of caramelised onions. Personally, I generally dislike having sauce that soaks too deep into the rice – I like having my rice as a plain contrast to the central flavours of the dish – but this was otherwise a tasty bowl of Oyakodon. Ms JH thought: “The Oyakodon especially [good] – i loved the gooeyness of it all. Actually one of the better oyakodons that I’ve had…”


Nabeyaki udon – udon served with vegetables and seafood tempura.

Brought out steaming with the sweet aromas of the broth, I was quick to break the egg yolk to have it incorporated with the fragrant mirin and dashi. The tempura prawn was still crispy; the slices of charshu were succulent but a little under-marinated; and the udon was err’ing on the soft side lacking that nice ‘Q’ bite to it.

Rating: somewhere between Average and Yummy – at lesss than $20 for the two of us it’s a decent cheap eat. But has a number of seething problems especially with ingredient availability. And, though the waitress was a pleasantly soft spoken Japanese waitress, kitchen-to-table speed was a little slow.

You may also like: DonTooShou Sumiyaki, Tao’s.

Yume Japanese Restaurant on Urbanspoon

13 Responses to “Yume”
  1. I dislike Japanese restaurants that screw up their basics. If they can’t get their basics right, they won’t be able to deliver complex dishes properly!

  2. I’ve been there a couple of times and I agree with your rating. Not bad, not great, but alright for what it is.

  3. Sky Splits says:

    Considering your “disappointment” perhaps “Cheap Eats” isn’t the right book for ya.

    Maybe “The Age Good Food Guide” may suit ya better. =P

  4. leaf – i think i’m inclined not to return, given how many options there are around for cheap eats =P.

    sky splits – actually some things in cheap eats is alrite, but the rating system is rather dodgy… and not everything in it is actually cheap LOL, rather ironic.

  5. Miss JH says:

    You forgot to mention that the meal came down to about $20 (for 3 dishes!!). Granted, the lack of sushi rice is unforgivable. But for the price we paid, the dishes that came out were really good I felt. The Oyakodon especially – i loved the gooeyness of it all. Actually one of the better oyakodons that I’ve had…

  6. Miss JH says:

    ‘inherent cheapness’ hahhahahaha.

  7. Katty-Kat says:

    Well the decor leaves more too be desired. Looks much too bare from the photos. I do like the look of the ceramic dishes they served on. I believe the food looks more authentic that way. Funny, that you seemed to like oyako don a lot – it even looks the tastiest of the 3 in the photo! My parents usually like to order Nabeyaki udon at restaurants. I actually really like the one they have at the little QV place (where we went to once – darn it, still can’t remember the name!) They serve it in a cauldron type thing encased in a wooden box. The structure is quite massive and very hot, but the soup itself has a very tasty broth with mushrooms, tempura, egg and all kinds of things in it. It is particularly good on a cold day.

    • Tangled says:

      The place ya’re referring to is “Meshiya.” =P

      • Katty-Kat says:

        Thanks. I’m not good with names. I always know how to get there and have an impression of the place, but the name I just forget! I do like the food there, though. 🙂

  8. Oh dear, you worry about a place when it runs out of sushi rice. I went to one place and we ate early as we were seeing a movie and at 6:15pm they had run out of sushi rice!

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  • Food RATING scale

    Unpleasant: damn upset my desire to eat

    Average: palatable but many shortcomings

    Yummy: a pleasant experience

    Yummy +1: mouth-watering like rain

    Yummy +2: exquisite flavours that hit all the right notes

    Divine: sheer culinary perfection!

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