I have often come across the ad for Dontac in freely distributed newsletters for Japanese visitors and residents of Melbourne. You don't really expect a restaurant to be situated where it is on City Road and it is very hard to find during daytime, if you've never been before. But once there, car parking is plentiful.
Dontac is a cafe style eatery cross between a beach side shack and an Izayaka (Japanese pub). It feels like it belongs in permanent summer weather next to the beach. If you have ever watched the Japanese TV drama Beach Boys you will know what I'm talking about. Dontac has an impressive list of Shochu (Japanese vodka) and Sake (Japanese rice wine which can be served hot or cold) that could rival Kura Sake Bar's.
The menu is simple and goes best with alcohol. Don't worry they serve beer as well if you're not into shochu or sake. Table setting is simple and minimal but clean. The focus is on eating the entree-size dishes. We ordered a lot of individual dishes to share. Yuki ordered, we just ate.
Some of the dishes served here I have never heard of or have tasted before.. It could be the chef's own creation, maybe? I read from a website that it is Kyushu-style home cooking...
How could we forget our glasses of Bishonen and then chilled Nihon Shu sake drank from clear short glasses that went so well with the dishes. :)
I have to say I am not sure about this restaurant... do I like it??
I think for the sesame and picked vegetable fried rice alone I would go back....
526 City Road
03 9696 6794
Food: Home-Style Japanese Cuisine
Top Dish: Sesame and Pickled Vegetable Fried Rice
Atmosphere: Simple and Japanese Nostalgia
Booking: Not essential. Takeaway is available.