japanese

Location: 

Sticks n Sushi
1 Crossrail Place E14 5AR
London
United Kingdom

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Sticks n Sushi is a Japanese restaurant that comes from Denmark and focuses on sushi and yakitori (sticks part in the name Sticks n Sushi). Sticks n Sushi opened 18 years ago by brothers Jens and Kim Rahbek and Thor Andersen, and in Denmark Sticks n Sushi now has 11 restaurants. They started entering the London market a few years ago and now have 4 restaurants in London in Wimbledon, Covent Garden, Greenwich and Canary Wharf (where I went). Sticks n Sushi is very popular in Denmark and apparently “the market leader in Japanese cuisine” according to some press articles, and they serve a modern fusion sort of Japanese/ Danish cuisine as the brothers are half Japanese.
 

Maija rated: 

3.50

Location: 

Uni
18a Ebury Street, SW1W 0LS
London
United Kingdom

The reason why I wanted to go to Uni is because the Harden’s guide said it was one of the top 10 new restaurants that opened in London in 2014. My personal view is that it could not be further from the truth. Uni is a restaurant in Victoria serving Peruvian and Japanese fusion food, another restaurant that is trying to copy the success of Sushi Samba and Nobu, which arguably introduced this fusion food to London. Uni has even hired the former Nobu chef Rolando Ongcoy to recreate this sort of food.

Maija rated: 

2.50

Location: 

Engawa
2 Ham Yard W1D 7DT
London
United Kingdom

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It was my fiancé’s birthday and I wanted to take him somewhere special, so I chose Engawa. I had not been before, but had read about it and seen various pictures of the food, and I thought this could be a great special location for a birthday. Engawa is a Japanese restaurant in Soho, next to the Ham Yard Hotel, and in contrast to other Japanese restaurants specializes in kobe beef (beef from the Tajima strain of wagyu cattle raised in Japan’s Hyogo Prefecture, the meat is famous for it’s flavor, tenderness and fatty/well-marbled texture), and serves it in a variety of styles and ways. You can find kobe beef on the menus of other Japanese and non-Japanese restaurants in London (for example the restaurant M Grill in city sells a 150g fillet for £150), but Engawa seems to be the only restaurant that focuses exclusively on this and puts kobe beef at the forefront.

Maija rated: 

4.50

Location: 

Shackfuyu
14A Old Compton Street W1D 4TJ
London
United Kingdom

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Bone Daddies, the Soho ramen restaurant, as well as the group behind Flesh and Buns, the modern Japanese restaurant in Covent Garden, has launched another modern Japanese restaurant Shackfuyu, in Soho, distance wise, in between Bone Daddies Soho and Flesh and Buns. Shackfuyu, according to them, serves the sort of food that is popular in Japan at the moment. Translated from Japanese the restaurant’s name means Winter Shack and this restaurant is only going to be open for a year, it opened in February 2015, so you need to visit it before February 2016.
 

Maija rated: 

4.00

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Location: 

M Raw
2 & 3 Threadneedle Walk 60 Threadneedle Street, EC2R 8HP
London
United Kingdom

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M Grill and M Raw are the new M Restaurants opened by the Bank station in the City area of London. The name clearly attracted my attention, and despite M Restaurants giving them only 1 M, I have given M Raw a few more. We actually came here on the first day of the restaurants opening, so it was a bit empty, but they did not have any obvious problems that restaurants can have when they first open, so they did a great job on this first day, and our waitress was very enthusiastic.

Maija rated: 

3.00

Location: 

Ippudo
Central Saint Giles WC2H 8AG
London
United Kingdom

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Ippudo is a Japanese ramen restaurant in London. Ippudo comes from Japan, where it first opened in 1985 in Japan’s ramen capital of Hakata by Shigemi Kawahara (who apparently is called the Ramen King). Now Ippudo has over 80 restaurants in London and is also present in Australia, Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, China, Taiwan and now in London, their first venture in Europe. Shigemi Kawahara has reinvented the Hakata-style tonkotsu (pork-based) ramen with its signature delicate, creamy broth, which you can get in Ippudo.

Maija rated: 

4.00

Location: 

Ikeda
30 Brook Street W1K 5DJ
London
United Kingdom

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Ikeda is a fine dining Japanese restaurant in Mayfair. I had heard a lot about it but had never been, so I decided to go there with my very special friend Paul. Ikeda is an old restaurant and has been open for 38 years. It feels very traditional with a sushi counter when you walk in and then tables and chairs further inside the restaurant that overlook the open kitchen and chefs cooking on one side. The clientele is very eclectic, I saw bankers and fashionistas eating lunch.

Maija rated: 

3.50

Location: 

Ramusake
92B Old Brompton Road SW7 5LR
London
United Kingdom

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Ramusake is a private members restaurant and club on Old Bromtpon Road. It is located in the place where Old Brompton club (also private members) used to be, where I have been a few times. I am not a member at Ramusake and neither are my friends, but as it was our first time visiting them and the place is new, they let us into Ramusake to have dinner and then we could decide whether to join them. Membership costs £250/ year, which is not expansive when compared to what some of the other clubs in London cost, but I was not tempted to join.

Ramusake is a fun place created by Scott Hallworth (ex Nobu and Kurobuta) and Piers Adams (expert on cocktails, music and vibe). I love Kurobuta, it is one of my favourite casual London restaurants and the menu in Ramusake was similar, only shorter, and most of the dishes on Ramusake menu, I had either seen or had in Kurobuta. Also I thought prices maybe were a bit cheaper at Kurobuta, but I am not sure, and would not like to bet on it.

Maija rated: 

3.50

Location: 

Kanada-Ya
64 Saint Giles High Street WC2H 8LE
London
United Kingdom

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Last few years we have seen a massive expansion of Japanese ramen noodle restaurants in London. The latest such restaurant is Kanada-Ya. Kanada-Ya is arguably the most authentic ramen restaurant, as it comes from Yukuhashi in Japan where it was set up by Kanada Kazuhiro in 2009. They also since then have opened a restaurant in Hong Kong. Kanada-Ya London is their first European venture. Kanada-Ya serves tonkotsu (pork bone broth) ramen.

I came to Kanada-Ya on a Thursday evening and was at the place at five past 6 and even then there was a long queue outside, so we had to wait for 30min to get in. Most of the people in the queue and in the restaurant where Japanese, a great sing. Also my Japanese colleague Asako told me about this place and said that it was getting all the Japanese in London very excited.

Maija rated: 

3.50

Location: 

Kintan
34 High Holborn WC1V 6AE
London
United Kingdom

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Kintan is amazing in every aspect apart from actually getting in and booking a table. I tried to go there for a long time. I once turned up on a Friday night and it ws fully booked, tried to call the next day, same thing, fully booked. Tried to call the following Monday, phone did not work, send an email, no response. Finally managed to get hold of them, it was full and I could not go on a Friday evening. In the end I managed to book a table for Saturday lunch, but it was a tedious process. They definitely focus on food and not on the customer experience, as even when we went there on the Saturday we had to wait to be seated for 5min until the receptionist finished a very long phone conversation and completely ignored us. However I forgot about all of this once I sat down and tasted the food.

Maija rated: 

4.00

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