Visually striking and with possibly the smoothest service in London, Sake no Hana is the epitome of exquisitely demure Japanese dining.
With a prime position on St. James Street, Sake no Hana strikes a provocative pose against the endless Beef Wellington and Bordeaux served up at the likes of White’s on the same road. Cypress wood and bamboo are artfully placed across the ceiling, all designed by renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, conducive to a feeling of being in a slightly avant-garde woodland.
Food and Drink
Gratifyingly for newcomers to Japanese cuisine, the menu is a masterpiece of simplicity, with sub-headings simply entitled ‘tempura’, ‘iron pot rice’ and the like meaning there’s no need for long winded ‘concept’ explanations from waiting staff. The red miso soup with tofu cake, seaweed and chilli yuzu is a snappy, zesty thing but the sushi rolls are the real stand out: the softshell crab tempura with cucumber and mango is heavenly in its lightness, the tempura perfectly hugging the softest, pinkest of crab meat. The wine list is thoughtful, with an entire section devoted to ‘oshouban’ wines, meaning ‘going along together’ with raw fish. It’s mostly successful with a perky Chardonnay Neil Ellis from Elgin, South Africa pairing wonderfully with a silky and substantial sashimi platter.
This is simply exceptional quality cuisine cooked in a masterful, understated style. Nit-picking ‘kaiseki’ restaurant enthusiasts will point to the menu being too long and the space being too large. The rest of us will simply get on with eating some of the best Japanese cuisine in London.
Sake no Hana is a partner of the American Express® Global Dining Collection which is a benefit for Centurion® and Platinum Card® Members offering special access to reservations and experiences with some of your favourite chefs.
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