The latest opening on Chippendale’s Kensington Street is Japanese eatery, KY-OTO, offering Sydneysiders two separate dining concepts.
Housed in one of Kensington Street’s heritage terrace houses, the restaurant comprises an intimate dining room as well as a more casual external courtyard located in the adjoining Spice Alley – a hawker-style alleyway behind Kensington Street which boasts a range of Asian food offerings.
KY-OTO’s courtyard menu will be more casual than the dining area, serving up bowls of homemade ramen; hot and cold udon; and rice dishes such as salmon teriyaki don and shogayaki don.
The dining room will also serve the full ramen, udon and don menu along with a wider selection of typical Kyoto dishes such as okonomiyaki; takoyaki octopus balls and tempura.
KY-OTO was designed by Australian-German architecture firm, LAVA. LAVA director, Chris Bosse, said the design intent was to create a traditional Kyoto eatery that fused traditional and contemporary elements.
“We combined 100 year old brick walls with contemporary designer bamboo lights, traditional solid timber logs with backlit perspex screens and a heritage 19th century courtyard with digitally printed graffiti,” Bosse said.
The dining room opens into a courtyard decorated with Japanese lanterns and surrounded by live bamboo and Australian-made recycled timber furniture. Murals of geishas created by local street artist, Scott Marsh adorn the walls.
Back inside, the kitchen is framed with a modern interpretation of classical Japanese screens and features contemporary tiles that emulate traditional Japanese brick patterns.
Kensington Street is located on the eastern edge of the $2 billion mixed-use urban village, Central Park, and comprises a mix of heritage-adapted terrace houses with interconnected courtyards, warehouses and rooftops bars.