Japanese Fine Dining in Mayfair – Tsukiji Sushi:
I love Japanese food. What’s not to enjoy – ultra fresh fish dishes, meltingly tender meat, perfect presentation and charming service? I was thrilled, on my recent visit to The Westbury Hotel to be invited to review Tsukiji, the compact Japanese restaurant which is one of the Hotel’s three offerings along with the Polo Bar and Alyn Williams at The Westbury.
Better still, I discovered Tsukiji has a tasting menu with paired Sake – perfect for diners like me who enjoy the ceremony of Japanese cuisine but don’t have the expertise to put together a perfectly formed meal.
We started the evening with a Cherry Bouquet Ginjo Sake from the Dewazakura Brewery. A lovely fruity and floral sake with notes of pear, melon and cherry blossom it was paired with the first dish – a delicate mushroom concoction. Buna Shimeji was grilled beech mushrooms with a piquant green sauce. A subtle earthy start.
The same sake was paired with the Hamachi Usuzukuri with Yuzu Ponzu. Delicate, fine yellowtail in wafer thin slices served with a chilli, radish and spring onion garnish A clean and light dish which epitomises one of the things I like best about Japanese food.
The next sake, Junmai Northern skies from the Akita Brewery was drier and milder with notes of ripe peach. We moved on to a Tataki dish, Chu Toro with a Jalapeño salsa. The flame grilled tataki helped to bring out the luscious richness of the fish – a complete contrast to the previous dish.
Next, a delicious octopus carpaccio – with fennel and radish and a truffle mustard miso dressing. My companion was particularly enthused by this dish and we both loved the rich, sweet truffle mustard miso dressing.
Black Dragon Junmai Ginjo from the Kokuryu brewery was dry, rich and welcoming. With it, to start, a perfect grilled oyster served with a creamy chilli mayonnaise type sauce.
Next, a plateful of yellowtail maki rolls with more jalapeño sauce. The deep fried rice was crispy and contrasted beautifully with the soft filling. And the spicy sauce cut through, making a lovely mouthful.
Perhaps my favourite of the sake, Fair Maiden Daiginjo Hoyo from the Uchigasaki brewery had notes of milky chocolate, wild mushroom and star anise.
Though maybe I was biased thanks to the next dish, Black Cod with saikyo miso sauce. A perfectly flaky, slightly caramelised morsel of fish which left me wanting more and was predictably my favourite dish of the evening.
Rather cleverly, a plate of nigiri sushi finished up the savoury part of the evening at Tsukiji, along with a bowl of miso soup. Had I started the meal by eating the sushi I doubt I would have appreciated some of the tasting dishes so much. Instead, we feasted at the end on tuna, butterfish, snow crab, scallop and salmon nigiri, before moving on to dessert.
I have a bit of a weakness for plum wine, which accompanied both our dessert. Mine, a creamy green tea ice cream with a chocolate ripple cacao nibs and raspberry compote was lovely and refreshing. My companion opted for a lighter but still delicious yuzu sorbet with white chocolate and miso granola rice paper.
The tasting menu is £65 per person or £95 with sake pairings. Tsukiji also offers an a la carte menu and a range of other set menus. It would work just as well for an intimate and quiet evening of dining or just for a light meal. And, it is an excellent complement to the other dining options at The Westbury.
Want to try for yourself – why not pin this post for later
37 Conduit St,
London W1S 2YF