137 Flinders Lane
Ph : (03) 9639 7073
A twitter conversation with @drng about a ‘hidden’ CBD restaurant which he challenged me to find was like a red rag to the proverbial.
Difficult to find? Not a problem.
The key is to know the name of the ‘cross’ laneway. Without that, and the knowledge that you are looking for a nondescript graffiti-strewn door, you are likely to walk past it.
Mistiming how long it would take me to walk there and arriving a fraction before noon to find it closed, I wandered aimlessly for a bit, arriving back at 12.05pm to find it not only open, but already almost half occupied.
On a bright Summer’s day it takes a minute to adjust your eyes to the darkened minimalist styling of Yu-U but once you do, it’s like a peaceful retreat. Dark colours, lighting that is very much ‘night’ lighting.
Most of the seating is at a long L-shaped bar, with a couple of tables to the side, and judging from the speed at which people arrived, this is a popular lunch time venue.
As the menu on the front door shows, there are a limited number of lunch items from which to choose. In terms of process, this manifests itself in a row of prepared trays outside the kitchen, visible to those seated at that end of the bar, ready for the placement of the main dish of choice, before delivery.
My choice? The sashimi, plus some tea which, happily, came with a large pot, and wasn’t powdered or a bag.
A compact no-frills tray with a selection of sweet fresh fish, more rice than I actually needed and a delicate broth that was clearly terribly healthy, but for which I’d have probably like a little bit more seasoning.
Yu-U has a really relaxed feel to it, despite the speed of the ordering and food arrival process. I didn’t feel any pressure to hurry, and was predisposed to linger there. I am glad that I decided to take up @drng’s challenge, and having enjoyed my brief time there, I think I’ll also take his suggestion of having dinner there. The ambience struck me as one that comes into its own in the evening.