Janken (Herne Bay, Auckland, New Zealand)
Moving from North to Northwest was quite a challenge for us in terms of dining options specially when it comes to Japanese, we missed our family favourite Naritas, up until now nothing can replace its bento box offerings, while Sushi Tomi was close we still missed that restaurant we visit on a regular basis. Today we are travelling a bit far, to the city in search for a bento box and we discovered this Japanese place in Herne Bay called Janken.
Just at the end of Ponsonby this place offers healthy Japanese ethnic cuisine utilising organic and locally grown ingredients as much as possible. It is a small restaurant but compared to other Japanese places this one felt fresh and spacious. The large unobstructed windows and glass doors did help a lot in that. Menu wise, it was straightforward, a lot of vegan options as well as a lot of organic ingredients, keywords or ingredients that is needed if you’re restaurant is located near Ponsonby. There were only two pages, for lunch menu, the sets in one, and the rice bowls and sides on the other.
Since we were missing the set dishes at our favourite Japanese resto in North Shore, we made sure we ordered a similar one here to address those cravings so we grabbed two Gozen Sets (NZ$30.00), where each set are served with Sashimi of Mt. Cook Alpine Salmon, Ruakaka Kingfish and Market Fish, Organic Miso Soup, 2 kinds of Osozai, small lunch salad with organic carrot & Koji dressing, Edamame, Tsukemono, steamed multi grain rice and a sweet treat.
One of the sets was a Yakiniku NZ Beef, a stir-fried sliced NZ grass-fed beef & vegetables w/ JANKEN BBQ sauce, spring onion, roasted sesame.
The other one was Chan-Chan Garlic Miso Salmon, pan-fried Mt Cook Alpine salmon & vegetables w/ JANKEN Chan-Chan garlic Miso sauce and spring onion.
And since we haven’t had a poke bowl for quite some time we also ordered something similar, their Salmon / Kingfish Sashimi & Avocado Bowl (NZ$25.00), fresh sliced fish on Sushi rice, avocado, fresh vegetables, organic quinoa w/ JANKEN organic carrot & Koji dressing, Nori seaweed, Wasabi and pickled ginger.
We really loved it, this definitely satisfied our cravings, everything was really good, definitely there were lots of many elements, it may be just a small serving per dish but there were many small servings which was enough. Dishes were aesthetically pleasing, true to the Japanese tradition, service was really good too. The place was quite cosy and we love the ambiance. Another good thing with this place is that they are also promoting a lot of organic items, you can see it from the menu, they also sell certain products like soy sauce, cooking sake, miso even different tea types. We even grabbed several items before we head home.
Definitely this place is a must try specially those who are into organic food, and since they have a good variety of vegan menu items, this will be a good place for them too.
Address: 158 Jervois Road, Herne Bay, Auckland 1011, New Zealand
Phone: +649 360 0555