Japanese Restaurant Openings - Autumn 2018

Credit - Charlie McKay

Get the lowdown on the latest hot openings and offers on the UK Japanese food and drinks scene, from coffee to buns and sushi to noodles!

Flesh & Buns Fitzrovia Now Open

Flesh & Buns Fitzrovia

Five years since the launch of Flesh & Buns Covent Garden, London's first dedicated bao bun restaurant, founder of the Bone Daddies Group Ross Shonhan last month opened a second branch in Fitzrovia! Whilst staying true to its izakaya roots, the new restaurant explores Nikkei cuisine, a delicious fusion of Japanese and Peruvian tastes and flavours.

As per its namesake, Flesh & Buns Fitzrovia is all about its smoked meat and bao buns. 'Chilli-Miso Smoked Brisket with Chipotle Miso BBQ Sauce & Pickled Red Chillies' and 'Shichimi and Sansho Pepper Jerked Duck with Coal Roasted Peach Chutney' are just some of the exciting dishes on offer that add a unique twist to tastes already familiar to Japanese food enthusiasts - but don't forget that basket of freshly-steamed hot buns!

That being said, seafood is by no means off the menu at this joint. Ross has established not only a wide selection of ceviches, tiraditos and maki rolls but also a variety of main dishes such as 'Tempura Plaice with Yuzu, Honey & Rocoto Pepper Sauce' and 'Prawn Toban Yaki with Aji Amarillo Garlic Butter' to take diners on an adventure of Nikkei cuisine from start to finish whilst also highlighting "the unsung heroes of the British coastline".

Flesh & Buns' signature Frozen Yuzu Margaritas remains on the drinks menu at Fitzrovia, with an expansion into the world of Peru's most celebrated cocktail - the Pisco Sour. Also available are a chosen selection of Nikkei-inspired Piscos available, including the 'Matcha Pisco' and 'Hakuto Pisco', which are made table-side when diners push the 'PRESS FOR PISCO' button on their tables. Fingers on buzzers!

Address: 32 Berners Street, London W1T 3LR

Sushisamba Covent Garden To Open November 2018

Sushisamba Covent Garden

Famous for its panoramic views over the City of London and beyond, Sushisamba Liverpool Street has become an institution amongst Londoners and visitors to the city alike. Now, Sushisamba have announced that they will be opening a second London location in Covent Garden at the famed Opera Terrace atop the historic Market Building this November (not so high this time!).

Menu-wise, diners can expect not only favourites from the Liverpool Street restaurant from across the Nikkei cuisine spectrum such as grilled meats, seafood stews and the brand’s trademarked samba sushi roll El Topo®, but also a number of exclusive culinary additions such as Pork belly with butterscotch miso; the Kobe Bun with horseradish mayo, aji amarillo, mustard, pickled onion, shallot and nori; and ‘The Pear’ with nashi pear, cranberry, guava, shiso and lime sorbet, to name but a few. As per, Sushisamba Covent Garden will boast an expansive list of cocktails and an impressive selection of sakes, whiskies and cultural spirits such as shochu, pisco and cachaça.

Finally, whilst Sushisamba Covent Garden will immerse diners in “the spirit of Japan, Brazil and Peru” through its staple large scale street art mural, the restaurant’s lounge and bar will feature Covent Garden’s first ‘live ceiling’ installation featuring South American and Japanese plants, a nod to the East Opera Terrace’s roots (pardon the pun) as glasshouses.

Address: 35 The Market, London WC2E 8RF

Omotesando Koffee London To Open Soon

Omotesando Koffee

Despite starting out as a hidden doorway in a Tokyo residential neighbourhood in 2011, Omotesando Koffee has become a unique multi-national success in the coffee world: incorporating the ritualistic and focused approach of sadō (茶道, Japanese tea ceremony), Omotesando’s brewing technique comes across as more calm than caffeine.

Now Omotesando will be branching out into London, its first European location. Each store features a minimalistic design that is specific to the tastes and atmosphere of the location so customers to the London shop will no doubt be in store (pardon the pun) for an exclusive coffee experience. Lots of information yet to be disclosed but check out Omotesando Koffee’s website to find out the latest news in the coming weeks here.

Address: Fitzrovia, London W1T

Koya Ko Market Halls Victoria To Open November 2018

Koya Ko

The latest addition to the Koya family, Koya Ko is set to open in the newly developed Market Halls Victoria this November! Focusing on classic, freshly made udon noodles and dashi, Koya Ko will continue to answer London’s calls for the thick and filling noodle (vegetarian and non-vegetarian options available!) both hot and cold whilst also providing diners with some new small dishes such as Chicken Nanban and homemade pickles to name but a few.

On the drinks front, Koya Ko will have soft drinks, carafe-served lemonade, and hot green and ginger teas – perfect with a steaming bowl of udon during the coming winter months!

Address: 191 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5NE

Offers at Shoryu Ramen Covent Garden

Shoryu Halloween Ramen Set

Shoryu Ramen’s house specialty is Hakata Tonkotsu ramen - thin, straight ramen noodles served in a thick white, creamy soup made from slow-cooked pork bones and finished with a range of toppings such as soy-marinated poached egg and slices of char siu barbecue pork.

But 24 October – 4 November Shoryu Ramen’s Covent Garden branch will be offering a 3 course Halloween set menu for £20 featuring Ghost Buns (vegetarian option available), Dracula Ramen (vegan option available) and a Witch’s Hat Ice Cream dessert – I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! Otherwise, the Bottomless Ramen Brunch for £38 per person is still valid until 31 December 2018. Find out more about the latest offers here.

Address: 35 Great Queen Street, London WC2B 5AA

Christmas at Jidori Covent Garden

Jidori Covent Garden

Has Christmas come early this year? Or is this the year you finally manage to avoid last-minute bookings and that dreaded Christmas rush? Either way, Jidori Covent Garden have it sorted, with a range of different packages to cater to all tastes during the coming festive season, including vegan/vegetarian/pescetarian options upon request.

For just £25 per person Jidori Covent Garden are offering super fun and casual Christmas parties for 8-12 people that includes a selection of tasty snacks, buckets (100% the correct measuring unit) of Karaage Chicken and karaoke for 2 hours, available both lunch and dinner times in the run up to Christmas. Eat and sing your heart out!

Maybe you’d be interested in a Japanese spin on the traditional Christmas feast? The chefs at Jidori Covent Garden have put together a special Christmas feasting menu that is great for sharing among friends – up to 50 of them! For only £30 per person, share some delicious small plates, followed by Jidori’s renowned yakitori and a seasonal duck dish, before finally tucking into dessert – Ginger Ice Cream with miso caramel and sweet potato crisps. Diners can also add some Christmas tipple, namely a cocktail on arrival and a half bottle of wine through dinner, for an extra £15 per person.

Want to add Karaoke to the festive mix (and why wouldn’t you!)? For an additional £10 per person you get the room for 2 hours – more than enough time for you to go a few rounds singing your favourite classics!

Address: 15 Catherine Street, London WC2B 5JZ

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Header Photo Credit: Charlie McKay