Tempura delights A restaurant with only twelve seats? Now that’s intimate. Walk through a non-descript entrance under an office building in South Melbourne and you’ll find yourself in a seriously private dining room, with just twelve seats. We’re not making it up. Tempura Hajime, which means ‘meet tempura’ in Japanese offers just one seating per evening and some lunches with sushi chef Shigeo preparing the entire meal in front of you. As the name suggests this is a tempura counter restaurant. The menu is either $85 or $92 per person (seven or 10 pieces of tempura), and for that you are served an array of small dishes as well. Proud owners of a Good Food Guide chef's hat since 2008 this is a wonderful Melbourne dining experience, and few people actually know about it.