A colonial-era bank vault has transformed into a subterranean Japanese speakeasy on Flinders Lane. Discover Otōto, or younger brother, underneath the esteemed Akaiito restaurant and enjoy grazing on sharing plates and small bites. Then, sip on sustainable Asian-inspired cocktails. Otōto is now open, and ready for you to visit.
Journey into this underground bar and eatery, and take a seat on top of a plush grey banquet, or inside a ruby red dining booth. Then, look up and admire the sculptural red thread of fate overhead. This thread symbolises the connection between two destined soulmates, and winds its way through Akaiito and Otōto.
The menu at Otōto was created by Head Chef Winston Zhang, known for the award-winning Kojin degustation at Akaiito. The menu is more relaxed, with sharing plates and larger dishes inspired by flavours from China, Korea, Japan and Malaysia.
“As people return to the city, we wanted our downstairs space to evolve into its own independent venue and offering,” said Zhang. “As a literal Otōto [to Akaiito], we see it being an informal space to meet friends and share a bite to eat, or to gather for an after-work drink or weekend celebration.”
Highlights on the menu include:
- Mussel Escabeche, Wagyu Bresaola, Pickled Jalapeno, Toast
- Kingfish Sashimi on Salt Rock, Grapefruit, Daikon, Ponzu
- Cured Salmon, Apple Dust, Finger Lime, Ikura, Shiso Vinaigrette
- Robata Grilled Miso Chicken, Yuzu Kosho, Robata Lime
- Black Angus Short Rib, Kimchi, Pickled Radish, Bo Ssam Sauce
- Vegetarian Gyoza
Small bites range from $6 to $13, sides from $9 and larger sharing plates from $14 to $36. On top of that, there is a ‘Feed Me’ offering for $68 per person.
Drinks at Otōto
The bar is all about sustainability and reducing waste. EcoSPIRITS will be used to reduce the consumption of single-waste bottles, while the cocktails will reduce produce wastage.
“A single piece of fruit will be used in its entirety,” explained George Leung, consultant. “Pulp for puree; skins and cores macerated to create flavoured syrups, sodas and bases; and the remained submerged in house-flavoured spirits. Cocktails will be topped with creative garnishes, and anything not used behind the bar will be handed back to the kitchen to be integrated in dishes.”
Cocktails created by Leung and bartender Lionel Ong include:
- A signature Nori martini
- Sparkling sake-based spritz with butter fat-washed gin
- Thai-style savoury concoctions
- Chinese tea-infused craft cocktails with floral notes and aromas
There will also be local and international wine, craft beer, sake and Japanese whisky.
Otōto seats up to 60 people, and offers dinner from 5pm til late.