The Best Japanese Restaurants in Melbourne
Our favourite Japanese restaurants in Melbourne
Japanese cuisine is one of the most loved cuisines in the world. It’s often light, fresh and made with premium ingredients. While many think of Japanese cuisine as just being sushi rolls and raw fish, it’s so much more than that and is incredibly diverse. With Melbourne being such an epicentre for quality dining, it’s no surprise that the Japanese restaurants in Melbourne are some of the best in the country.
There’s Japanese restaurants in Melbourne offering both unique and creative takes on ramen, teppanyaki, yakitori, sashimi, donburi and more. They range from high-end restaurants through to casual sushi joints and ramen bars that are perfect for lunch.
So whether you’re in the mood for fresh sashimi, a steaming bowl of ramen or a Japanese degustation with paired sake, the following Japanese restaurants in Melbourne will not disappoint. For us, they’re the crème de la crème.
A favourite for Richmond locals, Mr Joe offers Japanese fusion that’s unique, interesting and refreshing. It’s one of our favourite choices for dining with a group of our best mates as the space itself is relaxed, yet chic and stylish. You can dine at this minimalist haven for both lunch or dinner. The menu is broken into raw, noodles, grilled, small plates and finger-licking good dishes – we recommend sharing with your friends and trying as much as possible. Oh, and definitely get stuck into the sake! There’s a lot and it’s all excellent.
Try: Torched tuna carpaccio with ginger and apple puree dressing, shichimi & sesame seeds.When: Mon – Thurs: 7 – 10pm; Fri: 7 – 11pm; Sat: 8 – 11pm Sun: 8 – 9:30pmWhere: 362-364 Burnley Street, Richmond, Melbourne 3121
One of the most iconic Japanese restaurants in the world, Nobu is a pinnacle of culinary excellence. The Melbourne location is situated within Riverside at Crown Melbourne, in the heart of Southbank. It specialises in Japanese and Peruvian fusion made with quality Australian ingredients. It’s opulent to say the least, but for lovers of fine Japanese cuisine, it’s totally worth it.
Try: Brick oven roasted octopus with iso anticucho sauce.When:Lunch: Mon – Sun: 12 – 3pmDinner: Mon – Sun: 3 – 10pm;Where: Riverside Crown Melbourne, 8 Whiteman Street, Southbank, Melbourne 3006
It’s safe to say that Fujiyama knows a thing or two about Japanese cuisine. Serving Melburnians since 1986, this stylish restaurant offers an unparalleled dining experience. With a commitment to traditional techniques, there is an air of modernity to the dishes here. There are banquet and teppanyaki set menu options, as well as a plethora of sushi, sashimi and classic à la carte dishes. The choice is all yours – and we’ve never had anything below brilliant here. Simply, it’s a must.
Try: Miso shogayaki of thin slices of beef, cooked in miso, and served with salad.When: Mon – Sat: 5 – 10:30pm; Sun: 5 – 9:30pmWhere: 292 Bay St, Brighton, Melbourne 3186
Would a list about Japanese restaurants in Melbourne be complete without Sake? Absolutely not is the answer. This award-winning restaurant is one of six branches in Australia and brings a distinctive flair to time-honoured Japanese classics. It’s chic, beautifully decorated and each dish is presented like a work of art. Sake is, without question, one of the best Japanese restaurants in Melbourne and creates dynamic and innovative dishes that will leave memories to last a lifetime.
Try: Hiramasa kingfish with coriander-infused sweet ponzu, lime & jalapeño kosho.When:Lunch: Mon – Sat: 12 – 3pmDinner: Sun – Wed: 5 – 10pm; Fri – Sat: 5 – 11pmWhere: 121 Flinders Lane, Melbourne 3000
A Brunswick Street mainstay, Shibui Bar combines style, precision and classic Japanese flavours to create a dining experience that’s not to be missed. They are passionate about staying true to authentic recipes and you can expect gyoza, chicken karaage and ramen on the menu alongside a range of Japanese whisky that goes perfectly with your meal. Going above and beyond to create a peaceful space where you can indulge and embrace all-things Japan, Shibui Bar should be high on your list.
Try: Karaage fried chicken ramen with pork & chicken stock, marinated egg, soy sauce, kouji, yuzu kosho, spring onions, sesame & nori.When: Wed – Sat: 6 – 11pmWhere: 117 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy, Melbourne 3065
Another addition to the Flinders Lane charge, Kisumé is the very definition of opulence. With three levels and a variety of dining options – sushi counter, restaurant, chablis bar, private dining rooms and the chef’s table – this caters to all lovers of Japanese cuisine and culture. Striving for excellence in all aspects of the dining experience, each visit to Kisumé will differ as the menu and vision of the chefs constantly evolve. Brilliant? You’d best believe.
Try: Black Angus striploin with 180g garlic chip, kizami wasabi & teriyaki sauce.When:Lunch: Mon – Sun: 12 – 2:30pmDinner: Mon – Sun: 5pm til lateWhere:175 Flinders Lane, Melbourne 3000
Located on Church Street in Hawthorn, within the Beehive Hotel complex, Ocha is one of the most popular Japanese restaurants in Melbourne. Serving Melburnians contemporary Japanese dishes for over 20 years now, the traditional dishes are given innovative additions while the dining room is understated yet stylish, complementing the menu perfectly. The majority of dishes are designed to share and feature alongside sashimi, noodles, sushi and small tapas dishes. Put simply, this is essential dining.
Try: Tori yuan of citrus & soy-marinated grilled chicken with Japanese slaw & yuzu dressing.When:Lunch: Tues – Sat: 12 – 3pmDinner: Tues – Sat: 6 – 10pmWhere: 3 Church Street, Hawthorn, Melbourne 3122
Last but absolutely not least, Minamishima is arguably the best in the biz. Chef Koichi Minamishima is at the helm of this brilliant restaurant and follows the shokunin philosophy of a constant pursuit of perfection. The culinary journey (yes, journey) is a sensory experience through the omakase that showcases the very best elements of Japanese cuisine. It’s subtle, elegant, understated and absolutely incredible. A hard one to beat for the title of best Japanese restaurant in Melbourne, Minamishima is a delight.
Try: There is no à la carte available and the omakase is led by the chef and always changing. Enjoy it!When: Tues – Sat: 6 – 10pmWhere: 4 Lord Street, Richmond, Melbourne 3121