One of the newest Japanese restaurants in the centre of Sydney CBD is Bento Express located at Kent Street. This small but cozy, aesthetically modern Japanese restaurant offering authentic Japanese cuisine is a newbie in town. It is thus, understandable that when we went and dined in this place we were amongst its first clients during dinner time.
The place, though small, has two dining areas. A smaller space , in front of its kitchen, is what most would see when entering the place. However, a much wider and more private dining area at its second floor, overlooking the ground floor, is available for customers. The overall look of the place is contemporary with minimal aesthetics on its walls.
The range of food in this restaurant is typical Japanese cuisine from sushi rolls to the famed teriyaki dishes , katsudons and udons. Of course, one can avail of the Bento boxes which is a staple in most Japanese restaurants; however their price is a little bit over what is expected.
For our meal, we chose two in their range of value meal, the Seafood Tempura Set and Fish Katsu Curry, costing $12.80 each. Both serving of the dishes were reasonable; however, their taste is little bland in comparison to other Japanese restaurants in the city. Their drinks, which we initially thought were genuine Japanese drinks, were a disappointment as they served us canned Pokka drinks. If we knew along that these were what they called as ‘Japanese Cold Drinks’ in their menu, we should opted for the other canned soda drinks.
Service is bit slack as well, with ordered food being delivered approximately 30 minutes from ordering. The “Express” in their brand does not live up to what it basically states. Though not as busy as other Japanese restaurants in the heart of the city where delivery of ordered food will be understandably longer, this restaurant is way unconvincing, in terms of their promptness. It could have been reasonable if their foods were extremely savoury and scrumptious, but they were bit off the mark in comparison to other notable restaurants.
With its newbie status in mind, Bento Express can still be one of the best in Japanese cuisine, if they could live up to their name and make their dishes more appetizing and delectable.