Goji dazzles Sydney’s CBD with the best of Modern Asian Cuisine.

Penrith’s much loved Goji now has a second (berry – ha!) location on George Street, catering to the city’s lunch time hustle and diners alike, bringing together a fusion of Chinese, Japanese and Malaysian that will satisfy all your Asian feast cravings.

Not a stumble upon type venue, you need to know where it is to get into Goji which is a slightly hidden gem on the ground floor of 259 George Street. You walk through a marble foyer of the high-rise and then into a luxuriously decorated restaurant filled with sumptuous seating, dark wood and uniquely commissioned art work.

We sat in the wine room – surrounded by French wine and space for eight people to sit comfortably. It’s one of two private dining spaces perfect for family gatherings or meetings that would be more enjoyable with delicious food (just try to find us a meeting that wouldn’t be better handled with food!)

Goji is where Head Chef Sam Chang brings over 20 years of cooking experience across sushi, noodle bars and traditional Chinese – with a focus on cooking with the wok. Specialising in hand-pulled noodles, handmade dumplings, handmade roti, handmade desserts and stir firing on the wok for an extensive menu that brings together the best of Asian flavours with both care and flair.

But first – the cocktails. Tailored to the venue and menu, the regularly requested cocktails including the Kiss of the Red Dragon ($23) a blissful combination of Belvedere Pure, Elderflower, Strawberry, Citrus, Wild Berry Vaper (a theatrical bubble of smoke). The Litchi and Ginger fizz, a refreshingly light combination of Tanqueray, sherry, lychees, ginger and lemon ($21).

We started with the Kingfish sashimi, pickled cucumber, goji berry and white soy dressing ($22). The Goji berry, homage to the name, adds a layer of complexity not usually found in the classic sashimi favourite.  An enormous serving of Salt and Pepper squid ($18) (with a gluten free option – hooray) arrived – crispy outside and cooked with enough care to melt in your mouth. An absolute favourite with options for dietary is such a great find for everyone. That’s another great benefit to Goji they understand dietaries and eating preferences – so there are plenty of vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options.

Next were the striking Alaskan crab and seafood dumplings ($18). Four bright red dumplings stuffed full to overflowing with Alaskan crab meat topped with salty caviar goodness is what dreams are made of. Creamy and salty with a slight resistance in the bite – so the filling remains intact. An absolute treat and must order.

As we moved to mains our olfactory senses were serenaded by the complex spice mix of the classic Malaysian rendang. The slow cooked wagyu beef brisket rendang with coconut and kaffir lime ($36) is creamy, dense and rich. A heart-warmer and elevated classic.

We enjoyed the boneless Peking Duck with kumquat dipping sauce ($45). Having the duck deboned makes devouring the delicious duck easy. Well-cooked, crispy skinned duck with the sweet kumquat sauce is a wonderful take on the usual plum accompaniment.

There is something quite wonderful about the green beans found in Asian restaurants and these twice cooked green beans garlic and chilli ($16) are quite the must. An unusual thing to say – but these beans are moreish, crunchy and have the perfect mix of oil garlic and chilli spice – we could have had two lots of this – along with two lots of duck and that rendang. As it was we took food home (a lovely perk of a restaurant that also does takeaway – hot tip for those looking for lunch at their desks).

Finally we ended with the famous Ferrero Rocher Fried Ice cream ($16). A vanilla ice-cream ball, deep fried and dipped in chocolate with a hazelnut topping. Still can’t work out how deep fried ice-cream works and this one has a deep chocolately richness to it – that the biggest of chocolate fans will fall for.

Goji is the city’s latest addition offering a variety of Asian favourites and standards with a comprehensive wine collection and fun, new cocktails. It’s a beautifully decorated spot, reminiscent of restaurants throughout Asia – a must visit which will no doubt become a regular favourite.

Sydney Address: 259 George Street, Sydney NSW 2000

Monday-Friday 11.30-2.30 & 4.30-9.00pm

About the author

Michelle hails from the UK – but grew up with big flavours and spices thanks to her Singaporean Mum. International cuisine has always been part of Michelle’s life as she explored the world in the pursuit of delicious food and wine – along with a castle or two. Michelle now lives in Sydney after a lengthy stint in Brisbane (a city dear to her heart, which she visits frequently). She is letting her nose and palette be her guide as she discovers and shares exciting and delicious dining experiences. Michelle also loves, in equal measure, fashion, sunshine and puppies.


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