Hako Article Lead - narrow
Hako Article Lead - narrow 

310 Flinders Lane Melbourne, VIC 3000

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Opening hours Mon-Fri 12pm-2.30pm,Mon-Wed 5.30pm-9.30pm,Thurs-Sat 5.30pm-10.30pm
Features Bar
Prices Moderate (mains $20-$40)
Chef Masahiro Horie
Seats 50
Payments AMEX, Mastercard, Visa, eftpos
Phone 03 9620 1881

Hako has evolved with quiet distinction from a buzz-worthy laneway bolthole into a comfortably familiar piece of CBD furniture, perhaps no longer as hip but still happening. Its dark timber floor, whitewashed walls and rows of chunky ornamental sake bottles express a stripped-back sense of style that is ageing well, while waitstaff show cool composure but are never too cool. The menu is built around modern Japanese drinking food, but with a bow to culinary tradition. Novel izakaya-style morsels abound, perhaps crumbed pork fillet with sweet-sour tomato and fuji apple puree, or piquant chicken fingers filled with mentaiko roe and shiso leaf with dipping mayo. Slow-cooked beef ribs are as warming as thick socks, the fall-apart meat and soft carrot half-submerged in sticky sweet soy and peppercorn sauce. Bountiful moriawase is loaded with delectable sushi and velvety sashimi. Dessert choices are more minimal than the decor.