If you're sceptical about ‘Japanese tapas' don't worry. While the ‘series of small dishes' rule still applies, its more a DIY degustation rather than the scarier possibility of tempura chorizo or patatas teriyaki. The menu features a series of small, modern dishes with a delicate Japanese touch, starting with lighter offerings and progressing into heartier fare.

The attentive Japaz staff suggest around six dishes between two people as the general rule and the journey commences with witlof leaves stuffed with crab, green apple and lime salad with sour apple jus. A few too many flavours detract from the delicate crab, but it's an interesting combination of textures.

Swordfish with preserved lemon jus sees the fish seared and finished with aniseed liqueur - the only disappointment is there isn't more to go around. Fortunately the scallops with sweet soy and onion butter arrive - the dish is clean, simple and reserved, letting the scallops lead. Eggplant with pinenuts and cured mullet row is testament to the fact vegetable-based dishes can be as creative and substantial as their meaty counterparts. And speaking of meaty, the rich stewy, wagyu topped with almond cream is a mouth-melter of tender proportions.

Try the coarsely grated manchego cheese served with rum ‘n' raisin gelato and topped with nut praline-sounds like fusion-dining-gone-wrong but it works surprisingly well.

It may not be Japanese, tapas or even Japanese tapas but this is one newbie to keep an eye on.

Read more about Sydney's best Japanese restaurants.

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First published on . Updated on .

By Time Out Sydney editors   |  

Japaz details

165 Wycombe Rd

Neutral Bay 2089

Telephone 02 9904 0688

Price per person including drinks $51 to $100

Open Mon-Sat 6pm-10.30pm.

Japaz website

Neutral Bay area guide

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