23 Quadrant Mall
Pachinko is a Japanese-inspired smorgasbord of terrificness, and arguably our favourite eatery in Launceston. It’s not just that the food is highly original, varies from week to week, and is consistently among the best you’ll find, but that the combination of small plates, cheery service and cosy decor just make for an overall fun experience. Our favourite position is at the bar; it’s nice to engage with the great staff a little more than you might at a table for two. You can request a bar seat when you book online.
It’s fair to call many of the dishes Japanese–Western fusion. Japanese cuisine fused with anything routinely tops our culinary scoresheet, so to find someone tackling such a delicious melding of culinary concepts right here in Launceston really floats our boat.
Other dishes are as far away from Japanese style as you could imagine, though still prepared with every skeric of care. One time they had a ‘fast food night’, where the meals came presented variously as a brisket jaffle, Korean chilli hotdog, Scottsdale pork dim sims, pink-eye potato cakes, among other takeaway favourites. When someone as gifted as chef Chris makes a hotdog, prepare to be impressed.
By the way, the restaurant’s catchy name comes from Japanese pachinko parlours, multi-level gambling venues crammed with mechanical pinball-machine-like games and old Japanese men hoping for a bit of luck. ‘Pachinko’ is the noise the little metal balls make when they bounce around. I could be wrong about this. Pachinko crew, if you’re reading this please correct me in the comments.
There are plenty of wine options from the mid-$50s onwards, but they can also sling you some pretty cool alternatives. There’s sake, Japanese whisky, and various gins and spirits you might not encounter elsewhere.
Pachinko is cosy but far from cramped and certainly not noisy. The atmosphere is great. Book early.