The inconspicuous entrance of Dstrkt is oddly reminiscent of places I would expect to be frequented by Russian gangsters; sleek, hidden, with a hint of modern and glamour. The sakura (cherry-blossom) flower patterned dressing screens adorning the walls, the spacious room down all the stairs, it all made me think, ultimately, of Transistor (for all those gaming geeks out there).
Type: Modern European / Japanese
Camera: Nikkon D80, Nikkor 50mm lens
Disclaimer: I was invited to review Dstrkt. Queue usual blah about how all the opinions are my own (as if anyone would ever admit otherwise).
The somewhat cyberpunk environment of Dstrkt would be a perfect location for taking someone on a first date. It has that good balance of being classy enough while not coming across as too high end (you don’t wanna scare someone off by overdoing it at first). I was a bit first worried about how the restaurant offers both European and Asian/Japanese cuisine (due to my aversion to such combos). However it turned out it offers good quality dishes, with a focus on seafood, and a clear intent to provide more than just a meal.
The place also has a cocktail bar, which means not just being able to order nice drinks during the meal, but can end up being an easy segway after dinner to continue a date that went well (or drown yourself in alcohol if it didn’t).
The mix of multiple cuisines is managed by having two head chefs: one for the Japanese food and one for the rest. One of my particular favorites was the deep fried fish (I believe it was cod), wrapped in barbina pasta which gave it a lovely crunch and texture. Delicious roe on top, a nice pickled seaweed salad on the bottom, it combined effortlessly to give you a great dish not just in terms of texture, but also taste.
The sushi was quite lovely as well, even if somewhat too large. It’s just much easier to eat when it’s made to be bite sized. Then again with rolls it’s quite difficult to achieve that. And here you all though I was a size queen. Some of the dishes were a bit too heavy (I’m looking at you ravioli with cheese), and could have done with being balanced with some fresh ingredients. But overall I found the dishes to show a good towards great level of technical ability. Good ingredients, and a passion to deliver a visually attractive meal.
The desserts were decent, and I appreciated how the chef tried to be all artsy with the presentation.