Nobu – London

19 Old Park Lane (in the Metropolitan Hotel)
London, W1Y 4LB
020 7447 4747

We showed up for lunch on a weekday with no reservations so we ended up at the sushi bar. That’s not a bad thing since we really got to see how the restaurant worked from there. We were placed directly in from of the most beautiful salmon I’ve ever seen; it was so fatty, it practically looked like hamachi.
We ordered a 300ml “bamboo” of sake: Hokusetsu Junmai Daiginjo Yura Yura apparently made specially for Nobu. It was quite dry but the second sake, Hokusetsu Onikoroshi, was dryer with much more flavor. We should have ordered the 300ml of that instead. And when they say a “bamboo” of sake, that’s what it is, a large chunk of bamboo made into a pitcher of sorts and also kept in the freezer so the sake was very cold.

For food we started with miso. It wasn’t anything special and didn’t have as much miso as I would have liked but it was still good. We ordered the Bento Box and it was beautiful. Tempura rock shrimp with chives and friseé that was warmed by the box being closed when it was served and it was tender and flavorful. Three pieces of nigiri, small but like buttah.

Lesson one in the British “food” language: non-sparkling water is referred to as “still”. We asked for water and didn’t get any for a while, so we asked again and the waiter said, “Still?”…well of course we still want water! Oh, right…we just said “Yes” and then figured it out!

Then came the sushi order: Nigiri of hamachi, fresh sake, and maguro. All of them were absolutely wonderful! Usually, my favorite is hamachi and it was really good but the thing I just couldn’t get enough of, and the bill reflected that, was the fresh sake! It was so amazing that I just couldn’t stop eating it. I think we ended up with 8 orders of it! Then we finally just had to ask for the bill or I could have stayed there and eaten that salmon allllll day long.

This was the best meal we had in London…which, of course, isn’t saying much since those Brits aren’t known for their culinary skill…but I wouldn’t mind flying back over there just for a huge plate of that fresh sake!