Tanuki's Cave

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2 reviews
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319B Queen Street,
Auckland Central

(09) 379 5151

The ViewAuckland Review

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Review byJono Park14/02/2011

I have mixed emotions about Tanuki's Cave. On the plus side, it really is the best place to take someone on a first date - it's dark, underground and a lot of fun, especially if saki is involved. On the other hand, I'm not with any of the people I took there anymore. Perhaps I started out too well... no further dates could be quite as fun? But you're not reading this to hear about my minefield of a love life, are you? Focus, Jono!

The night we went, we had a group of 10 arrive unannounced which meant that we had to navigate a pretty bolshy waitress ("ten is fine... but any more than that and you've got a problem"). Yeah we probably should have given forewarning, but the best restaurants cope with this without batting an eyelid and in any case, you can't book. With that in mind, I probably wouldn't recommend Tanuki's Cave for a big group (i.e. more than 6). And anyway, it's more fun if it's just the two of you. Longing glances over the deep-fried rice balls and all...

The dishes all come out as small plates, grilled, baked or deep-fried and all around $5. This means you can mix and match as you please. My regular choices came out as usual (fillet steak, deep-fried pumpkin and fish with tartare sauce), but the deep-fried crumbed cheese was also popular, especially with the ladies it seemed. Edamame and the cabbage with mayo are definite musts as starters. Cabbage has never tasted this good. And that sauce... If you find one of the dishes a bit bland (and the rice balls come into that category), just squirt out some of the sauce onto your plate and dip away. It makes everything good. I wanted to steal a bottle.

Cost-wise, it's pretty good too, given that you can get as little or as much as you like. For our table of 10, it came out at about $35 each, which included about 3 dishes each, some dishes to share and drinks. Not bad at all.

I'd be surprised if you haven't been to or at least heard of Tanuki's. If not, definitely go. It's fast, it's fun and if you combine it right, you can have an amazing variety of food. Probably best to go with a few friends rather than a big group, or as I mentioned a first date - I just hope you have more success than I did.

Did we hit the nail on the head, or do you disagree entirely? As always, post your thoughts on this review on our forum HERE

Tanuki's Cave has been reviewed by 2 users

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