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Melbourne’s culinary king Chris Lucas opens Kisumé Japanese restaurant

Kisumé [kiss-oo-meh] meaning ‘a pure obsession with beauty’ is the latest restaurant from Chris Lucas. The highly anticipated, three-level concept venue opens its doors for the first time on May 15.

Kisumé is a contemporary Japanese restaurant with a sushi bar and restaurant residing on the ground floor and basement levels, whilst Kuro Kisumé sits on the first floor. Kuro Kisumé (meaning black) includes The Table, a unique omakase-style dining experience seating just 12, two private dining rooms with a similar bespoke offering, plus the Chablis Bar, the first such bar in Australia.

Chablis Bar Kuro Kisumé - Level One Sushi Bar - Ground Floor(1)

A place where the traditionalist and modernist meet, Kisumé is not only about the dining; there are many other facets to explore. Kisumé will stimulate your senses, time and time again.

Leading Kisumé’s kitchen is Master Chef K.S Moon. Joining Chef Moon as sushi masters are the Hatanaka brothers, Yosuke and Shimpei, who transport their mastery from Tokyo and Kyoto respectively, and will anchor the Kisumé sushi bar and restaurant.

Guests can expect dishes that draw on the purity and exacting nature of Japanese food but are uniquely Australian (nearly 100 per cent of the menu features produce from Australia and New Zealand). Seafood is, of course, a highlight.

Guests will be offered two food menus featuring a selection of raw and hot dishes. Hero dishes include:

  • Tamago Mushi with Egg Custard, Prawn, Shiitake Mushroom, Foie Gras and Sukiyaki Foam
  • Steamed King Crab Gyoza with Quail Egg and Bonito Vinaigrette
  • Ulladulla Grilled Mackerel with Sesame Ponzu
  • Crispy Wagyu Truffles with Truffle Miso and Mozzarella
  • Chilled Hiyashi Lime Soba Noodles in Bonito Broth and Fresh Lime
  • Foie Gras and Beef Tenderloin with Yakiniku Soy
  • Seared Yellowfin Tuna Tataki with Wasabi Tofu and Chilli Yuzu Ponzu
  • St Helens Calamari, Chargrilled, Seaweed

A dedicated sushi bar also offers innovative dishes where diners can select from assorted and speciality rolls and sashimi including Alaskan King Crab with Spring Onion, Flying Fish Row and Soy Paper.

Kisumé boasts a formidable wine team led by one of Australia’s most pre-eminent wine experts, Philip Rich. It includes Group Sommelier Jonathan Ross (formerly Eleven Madison Park) and Kisumé General Manager Markus Tschuschnig (former F & B Manager of MASA, New York).

The Wine Trilogy
The Kisumé Winewall™, reminiscent of the wine wall Chris Lucas first introduced at The Botanical, South Yarra, is a visually outstanding collection with four separate glass cabinets devoted to Chablis, Pinot Noir, Riesling and rare Sake and Japanese Whisky.

The Chablis Bar, Australia’s first, offers up to 80 Chablis by the bottle and has a regularly changing selection by the glass. Chablis’ flinty, minerally and citrusy characters are the perfect partner for the delicacy and subtleties of fresh seafood.

The main Kisumé wine list (including Chablis list) rounds out the Trilogy, with wines chosen to complement the delicacy of the food. Kisumé will also offer single vineyard tap wines made by some of Australia’s best winemakers. The first in the line-up is a Riesling from Henty and a Pinot Noir from the Mornington Peninsula.

Kisumé fuses together design, art and dining to create a unique experience across three levels.

With interior design by renowned architects Wood Marsh (their first restaurant project in 20 years), Kisumé’s interiors lean towards minimalism and purposefully play on the senses. True to classic Japanese design, guests entering Kisumé are transported to another world. Expect a minimalist palette with concrete, softened by timber flooring, matte brass, grey leather, velvet and dusty pink curtains.