Film: Jiro Dreams Of Sushi

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Film: Jiro Dreams Of Sushi

When: Monday 11 & Thursday 14 February, Time TBC

Where: The Tyneside Cinema (Directions)



Finally the Tribecca selected documentary comes to Newcastle! We’ve been hearing buzz about how great this documentary is for a while now and if it’s Rotten Tomatoes score (99%) is anything to go by we are in for a real treat!

“85 year-old Jiro Ono, is considered by many to be the world’s greatest sushi chef. He is the proprietor of Sukiyabashi Jiro, a ten-seat, sushi-only restaurant inauspiciously located in a Tokyo subway station. Despite its humble appearances, it is the first restaurant of its kind to be awarded a prestigious 3 star Michelin review, and sushi lovers from around the globe make repeated pilgrimage, calling months in advance and shelling out top dollar for a coveted seat at Jiro’s sushi bar. At the heart of this story is Jiro’s relationship with his eldest son Yoshikazu, the worthy heir to Jiro’s legacy, who is unable to live up to his full potential in his father’s shadow. An elegant and tasty tale that will even satisfy people who aren’t fans of this little delicacy.” – Tyneside Cinema





Sometimes when you visit one of the Asian supermarkets in Newcastle it can be a bit of an overwhelming experience for those unaccustomed to the brands and the types of food available. In this series of articles we hope to profile some of the Japanese products available in Newcastle’s Chinatown, we have previously covered the drink Ramune.


Pocky (ポッキー) was introduced in 1966 by the Japanese company ‘Ezaki Gilco’ and is supposedly onomatopoetically named after the sound that the biscuit makes when you bite into it. Pocky is a thin biscuit finger covered for the most part in a flavoured chocolate. Pocky is a good place to start your quest into Japanese sweets as it has a very familiar taste to those unaccustomed to Asian sweets and, more importantly, Pocky is damn delicious!


You may be thinking that Pocky sounds awfully familiar to the Mikado product line available in many UK supermarkets, and that’s because it is the same. In the UK and Europe it was deemed that Pocky needed a rebranding (which included an ad campaign featuring a woman accidently photocopying her genitalia,  much to her bosses delight) and thus the Japanese Pocky biscuit became Mikado. So why should you bother buying Pocky instead of Mikado if it is essentially the same product?


A Typical Dreamy Japanese Advert For The Pocky Brand

Firstly Pocky is usually much cheaper than Mikado, selling from as low as 70 pence in the Asian supermarkets compared to the standard retail price of £1.35 for Mikado. Next, the variety in pack sizes of Pocky.  From mini-packs all the way through to novelty sized jumbo packs (which make great gifts, by the way) are for sale in Chinatown. Finally, the flavours available! Mikado currently only has 5 varieties (milk/dark/white chocolate, hazelnut and Daim bar) where as you can seemingly find a different flavour  in each store you visit! There are too many flavours to list here, but include milk, banana & chocolate, strawberry and green tea.


Pocky is one of those products that can be found in almost all of the Asian supermarkets, but they are easiest to find in 7Days, where the Pocky display is literally opposite the main door, Hiyou and Wing Hong Supermarket stock a respectable selection in their sweet isles as well. You may also find next to the Pocky display the ‘Pepero’ brand, this is a similar product of Korean origin.

Next time you are passing by, why not pick up some Pocky to have during your lunch break at work? Try to avoid photocopying your genitalia though…

St. Sushi Japanese Restaurant



What: St. Sushi

Where: Newcastle Chinatown Area, Westgate Road. (Directions)

Phone: 0191 221 0222

Open: Mon-Thurs & Sun 12-15:30, 16:30-22:30. Fri 12-15:30, 16:30-23:00, Sat 12-23:00

Facebook: Fan Page


Since 2006 St. Sushi has garnered a reputation as one of top places to eat in Newcastle, let alone in Chinatown. Situated just opposite the Mill Volvo Theatre (formally the Tyne Journal Theatre) St. Sushi is instantly recognisable from the outside by its unusually shaped frontage, and the large fish logo above the door!


Japanese symbol of good luck greet you at the door.

As soon as you enter the restaurant you are greeted by a fish tank and several lucky cat figures, both symbols of good fortune in Japanese culture. The space is bright and welcoming; with both regular open tables available as well as comfortable booth seats. Two large pictures of the busy crossing in Ginza, Tokyo (instantly recognisable from many films, most notably ‘Lost in Translation’) adorn the walls, while a television screen between them plays Asian music videos/concerts which serve as the restaurants soundtrack. The waitresses are helpful, welcoming and friendly and dress in a kimono inspired uniform.


A Chicken Teriyaki Bento Box from St. Sushi

On the menu, as their name might suggest, sushi is main attraction here, although it is not by any means all that is served in the restaurant. Huge sushi platters for groups are available, bento-box sushi sets for a single meal, as well as individual sushi pieces if you want to mix and match or have them as a side dish. Plenty of other non-sushi and/or non-fish options are available including, but not limited to, simple rice and noodle dishes. A good place to start if you are spoilt for choice is one of the bento boxes, sure to impress straight away with their beautiful presentation!


St. Sushi is a great place to go for either a light bite or a hearty meal, the food is reasonably priced and the waitresses are more than helpful if this is your first foray into sushi (or even if it’s not!). Next time you’re heading out for a meal, why not give St. Sushi a try?