A night at James Parker promises sophisticated dining in a curated space reminiscent of a modern art museum, but packed with the warmth and care of your favourite local haunt.

The venue embodies omotenashi (which roughly translates to “Japanese hospitality”) at its finest. Omotenashi is felt in the way this diner takes care of every detail – from the locally sourced fish for sashimi to the curated list of imported Japanese sakes.

Diners curious to see Japanese knife skills should book a spot at the seven-seat sushi bar, where chefs deftly transform rice and Australian seafood into nigiri and slice beautiful logs of salmon into sashimi. The sashimi selection will depend on the day’s seafood supply and might include hotate (scallops), salmon, maguro (tuna) and octopus. The popular tataki is made with lightly seared Margaret River Wagyu that’s sliced and served with citrusy ponzu sauce.

Drinks are taken just as seriously. Sake enthusiasts will relish the burn of hot sake and the smoothness of cold sake (and can try a few options in the kikizake set). Wine and beer aficionados will find their match with a range of beer, umeshu and wine – friendly staff can help with pairing options. There’s also Japanese whisky and chuhai (a shochu highball) in fun flavours like yuzu, ginger and peach.

The attention to detail extends to the sleek, timber-clad interiors. A rounded timber tunnel divides the space – its curves echoing the ribcage of a whale. Similarly shaped pendant lights hang over booths in the separate dining room.

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Updated: November 14th, 2023

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