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KEEPING IT AUTHENTIC: Oishii Japanese Thai Restaurant

Oishii Restaurant is one of few restaurants that are open seven days a week, so we decided to take up the opportunity to have dinner at this popular restaurant in the middle of the week and were surprised to see just how busy this charming family owned and operated restaurant was.

Dining at Oishii is like few other restaurant experiences, and it is easy to see why Oishii has become a highly recommended and favourite dining destination amongst locals and visitors. Located within the Roche Estate complex on Broke Road in Pokolbin and overlooking the architecturally designed amphitheatre and vines, Oishii provides a conveniently located, relaxed and affordable dining alternative with dishes designed to please every palate.

The menu at Oishii is a combination of two Asian cultures - Thai and Japanese and includes traditional Thai favourites such as Thai fish cakes, stir-fried vegetables, chicken cashew nuts, green curry chicken and other fragrant Thai curries right through to Japanese dishes that include assorted sushi and sashimi selections, teppanyaki and teriyaki. There are also a variety of vegetarian dishes.

We decided on the chicken satay, and assorted sushi and nori rolls for the entrée as well as the miso soup which proved to be a perfect accompaniment to the Japanese dishes.

We then made a selection of three Thai dishes all served with steamed rice for main courses. The first included the yellow lamb curry which was selected from the specials board. This dish was superbly presented, and the lamb deliciously tender with just a hint of ginger and crushed garlic. The sweet and sour chicken - looking colourful and healthy, was served with cucumber, tomatoes and shiitake mushrooms and with a tangy and extremely delicious sweet and sour sauce. Our last dish was our favourite and a very traditional Thai meal - the Panang duck curry and as we later discovered a very popular dish amongst Oishii's patrons. It came served with juicy and generous slices of skinless duck sitting within a deep-flavoured Panang curry sauce, and after the first taste it was easy to see why this dish was such a favourite – it was absolutely delicious and left us wanting more.

The dishes are perfect for sharing and ideal for families or groups of friends.

The setting is minimalist with a Thaithemed dining room, however, diners also have the option of sitting outside on the terrace overlooking the vines - a perfect setting for those warmer days and evenings.

Oishii offers a real alternative for dining in the Hunter Valley and is a “must dining experience” for when you next visit.

For more information and menus visit www.oishii.com.au

(This review was first published in Wine & Dine Hunter Valley and is republished here with permission)

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