South American flare goes Japanese as Luis Tan spins new tricks


Fusion cuisine is a bit like cross breeding dogs, sometimes you end up with a gorgeous pooch, other times it’s just plain weird.

Sydney is no stranger to fusion cuisine but Luis Tan blends two cultures together in the most bizarre form of multi centre food holiday you can have. Peruvian Japanese anyone? It might seem strange (it is) but the new menu works thanks to the incoming chef duo Leandro Legname (ex-Bridge Street Garage), Sean Andrews (ex-Tetsuya) along with cocktail expert Quynh Van Nguyen (ex-China Diner).


The space is bright, vibrant and a riot of colour as Japanese parasols dot the ceiling alongside upside down fountains (the kind you would see in a town square in South America). Pillars are slapped with pictures of Peruvian ancestors, sepia faces staring at you over a Pismo Sour. They’re only jealous. Circular booths are filled with bearded, beanie clad hipsters, well it’s Bondi after all, where else could they go?


The cocktails are great such as the Mai Tai Tanner with maraschino liqueur and dehydrated lime especially paired with bar snacks of delicious wands of plantain chips or edamame in a soy bath. It’s rare that tofu on a menu is the thing that you can’t stop thinking about, but these silken poppable morsels cooked ‘Nasu Dengaku’ over fire are crisply pillows lounging on a betel leaf with a juicy grated combo. It’s delicious and it’s the highlight.

Blackened gyozas filled with roasted pumpkin arrive with a sweet miso and black vinegar sauce. The tuna sashimi is lightly wrapped in filo accompanied by spicy shichimi pepper and miso mayonnaise. Who can resist a two handed affair of charred sweet. Mains of blue eye cod and crispy skin pork belly with ginger, coriander, and black vinegar fly out the kitchen. Save room for the churros; often a letdown but here it’s crunchy, warm and sugared in all the right faux honey places.

It may have started with a poster campaign ‘Who is Luis Tan?’ The missing mystery person got tongues wagging but now they are put to much better use…simply enjoying the new menu.

Luis Tan
178A Campbell Parade
Bondi Beach NSW

About the author

Karen’s corporate job back in the UK had included entertaining clients in some of the best restaurants. This ultimately sparked a curiosity 'Just how do they do that?' (she confesses she was brought up on meat and vegetables, so this was all very exciting). Currently a Mr & Mrs Smith 'Tastemaker', she’s flashpacked around the world, learning about wine, experiencing different cultures and cuisines and had a two- year love affair with it all. Originally from England, she finally settled in Australia and continues to be besotted by food, wine and travel preferring to focus on the luxury end of town (thread count does matter).


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