We've taken a long time to wander down the mysterious alleyway that leads to Sydney Madang. Led astray in many ways by other favourites in the area and in Eastwood, the time was right when we caught up with friends to hear about their recent adventures in Japan over winter. So while we went green with jealousy over tales of kaiseki in Kyoto and the joys of Rabbit Island, we decided it was time for a detour off Pitt Street to try it out.
Tofu Kimchi $18. Stir Fried kimchi with pork and steamed tofu. The pork is meltingly soft and mixed in with the not too spicy kimchi. The harder density of the steamed tofu and the contrast in textures makes this one of our favourite Korean dishes.
Ban chan selection, not as good as our Eastwood favourite Jonga Jip, only a small selection of kim chi, potato, seaweed, iceberg lettuce in a pear dressing and some bean curd strips. We weren't offered any refills when they were quickly emptied.
Haemul Pajun, $19. Seafood and shallot pancake, large. This was a fine example of a seafood pancake, good filling and crisp edges. The large was a big serving, plenty for four people.
Kimchi Dweji Shabu Shabu, $43. Thinly sliced pork, rice cakes, mushroom. udon and spicy kimchi soup. We would have normally had BBQ but felt like a soupy substitute tonight. The soup had a good spice, not too salty which is a big plus. Different to a steamboat where everything is cooked in one go, shabu shabu is designed for slower, cooked to order and preference eating. The pot comes already steaming hot, filled with a mix of vegetables (mostly cabbage) and noodles.
Thinly sliced pork is swished in the steaming broth and fished out and eaten when ready.
Oyster, enoki and king mushrooms are added, the harder rice cakes we cooked for a lot longer so they softened and went as pliable as the mushrooms.
Buy two Cass, get one free special is on, which we rightly take much advantage of. Each beer is only $5, so they aren't too expensive to begin with.
It was a quieter Sunday night when we went so there wasn't too much of a wait. The space is large and can accommodate groups, best to book if you can.
Sydney Madang is at 371 Pitt St, Sydney. The address can be a little misleading, it is up an alleyway off Pitt St.