Kikusan | $$ | 4

Kikusan is the type of place you walk past every second day, and no matter what time it is, it is filled with people. Part of you is naturally intrigued about what can bring so many people to one place every day without fail, the other part of you is telling you to avoid the long queues at all costs.

A colleague had offered to take a couple of us out to lunch, and her first recommendation was Kikusan.

Without any hyperbole, the line for lunch is incredible. Kikusan is a large venue, and the line moves quite quickly, but you sense from the moment you join the queue this will be at least 30 minutes (which if you’re busy with work, has seriously eaten into your lunch break before even having a chance to look at a menu).

Nevertheless, we braved the line and were at long last seated. Near the front of the line there was a menu on the wall, so we knew exactly what we wanted as we sat down.

I ordered the assorted sashimi, and my colleagues ordered some delicious looking rice and noodle dishes.

The portion size of the sashimi was good, and the presentation immaculate. Amongst the many ingredients on my plate (if my palate serves me correctly) was salmon, fish roe, thinly chopped onion, prawn, wasabi, glutinous rice, wasabi, cucumber and prawn. Each ingredient, when eaten, burst with a distinct flavour. The real joy of this dish was discovering the order in which you should try the component parts, moving from one motif to the next. As a general rule of thumb, wasabi is good with anything and everything.

Kikusan is an excellent restaurant, and I now know what all the fuss is about. It is reasonably priced, the food is fresh and very tasty. The only drawback is the time investment in lining up (though I suspect if you want to go for either a very early or very late lunch, the line would be a fraction of its usual size). As the old saying goes, good things come to those that wait.

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