In Asian, Dining on
March 4, 2010

Arisana- eastwood

One of my well known characteristics is that I’m very sensitive to the cold. At school, in winter, you’ll often find me with at least 4 layers on (2 of which are thick wollen jumpers) and will not take them off unless it gets hot enough that most people aren’t even wearing jumpers. In summer, you’ll sometimes still see me with a jumper on, even if I’m sweating until someone points out that it’s too hot to wear a jumper- in which case i’ll take it off (not that it makes too much of a difference).

This is quite different to my mother and sister who are extremely sensitive to the heat. Summer leads to a lot of inactivity and my mum dreads any baking or ironing that needs to be done. So on another typical hot summer day in Sydney, we, for some crazy reason walked from one side of Eastwood to the other (from Chinese side to the Korean!). This of course ended up with a lot of sweat and we had hardly enough energy to take any more steps. The reason for this craziness? Food. Or rather my want of Korean food (I just happened to drag them along!)

By the time we reached the other side, out criteria in choosing a restaurant were not in the food itself but in the level of air conditioning. The shops with their doors closed were most likely to have air con but the newer looking restaurants did look cooler than the old ones.

This was the reason we ended up at Arisana.

Like most Korean restaurants, they gave us the (free) appetisers. I never liked pickled radishes before- the spicy ones were hot and tasted very rasidh-y. Although, in a strange way, it was still nice. The yellow ones were much sweeter- I’m much more familiar with these ones as we buy them at the Asian supermarkets (we usually put them in sushi!) Interestingly, we saw people sprinkling vinegar onto it- maybe that’s the traditional way to eat it? Interesting, the menu at does not comprise of only Korean food, but also Taiwanese food! And, the menu was in Korean, Chinese and English! (Although it’s mostly in Korean) The food was reasonably priced- most of their dishes were around the $30 but we went for the less expensive options of noodles/rice which were around the $12 mark. Fried Dumplings $10

The dumplings were nice- crisp and crunchy. However, they don’t stay like that for long. We were distracted by the other food that came, and by the time we got back to these, they had gone soft.

Seafood Rice $13
The food comes really fast. The seafood rice comes as a pile or rice and a pile of seafood (and vegetables). The dish ia quite big, and cold possibly feed two (normal appetite-d people)and tastes really good. The seafood ‘sauce’ tastes like fish soup and is quite runny.
It also comes with a soup which at first looks like borsch but then it doesn’t taste like it- it doesn’t have a strong tomato taste (despite its colour) and is quite hot. To me anyway (to normal people it probably isn’t that hot…) It tastes delicious though.
Sauteed Black Bean Noodles $12
One of the Korean dishes on the menu, the black bean noodles, is by far the most popular dish in this restaurant. When we walked in, the first thing we noticed was that each table had at least one bowl of these unique black noodles. So, out of curiosity, we ordered one too.

Mix mix mix!

The black bean noodles- there’s a few variations of these from plain black bean noodles $9 to other things $12. We chose the sauteed ones becuase there is a picture on the menu. Unlike the other ones, the sauce comes separately from the noodles.
The problem with eating food from different cultures is that at time, you don’t know how to eat it properly. Luckily, we witness a guy sitting a another table pouring all the sauce over the noddles and then mixing it, so we copy him. There is a lot of sauce though, and we don’t end up eating all of it (the sauce, that is) because there’s so much. The saucewas delicious- there were lots of onions which I like but not an empowering onion taste. It wasn’t too salty, was slightly sweet and came with meat and cucumbers which tasted delicious. Served with thick noodles, the serving was actually a lot larger than it had seemed left us very full!
We leave, feeling very satisfied (and bloated) knowing very well that we will be back again. Maybe for dinner (as I think, the lunch and dinner menu are the same), and most likely dragging my father along too!
108 Rowe St
Eastwood NSW 2122
(02) 9858 2300
Open Daily 10:30am-10pm
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  • Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella

    I'm the same as you-I don't like the cold at all! Not looking forward to Winter here, even if we have comparatively mild Winters! I really like the look of the black bean noodles! 🙂

    March 5, 2010 at 1:17 AM Reply
  • Eyes Bigger Than Belly

    Oh I"m the opposite – I LOVE the cold!! I hate the heat – it makes me so grumpy!

    I love dumplings and that Black Bean Noodle dish looks so interesting… I really need to be more adventurous with where I eat and WHAT I eat… yum!! 🙂

    March 5, 2010 at 9:24 AM Reply
  • A cupcake or two

    oh the seafood rice looks delicious. I absolutely love the cold. I am a winter girl. Although I do love the beach and summer too.

    March 5, 2010 at 12:04 PM Reply
  • lis

    Hi Von… I much prefer the cold, at least then I can rug up in front of my tv with a hot cup of milo.. 🙂
    Those black bean noodles look really good.. must try it one day..!

    March 5, 2010 at 5:46 PM Reply
  • SteelCityFlan

    Oh my God, I know, 250 cupcakes! My eyes almost popped out of my head 8D But I accepted and I'm so excited, I'll be baking at my teacher's house next Sunday, freezing the cupcakes there to keep them fresh, and then coming back the day of the party to frost them. So excited.

    The eight yolks made the cupcakes so tasty and rich…my mom is mad at me for leaving dangerously fattening and tempting pastries around the house. Heh.

    I'm with you on the cold. I need spring to come around, badly. It's my favorite season for baking! And really just about anything else 😀

    March 6, 2010 at 7:52 PM Reply
  • Ellie

    Love the black bean noodles! This place looks good.

    March 12, 2010 at 9:35 AM Reply
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