Wabi London | Restaurant Review » Frost Magazine

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May 03

Wabi London | Restaurant Review

I love Asian food. So reviewing Japanese restaurant Wabi was a highlight of my week.

Wabi is a tranquil, stylish and classy restaurant that feels like it is a million miles away from the hubbub and stress of London. It is two minutes walk from Holborn station. I really love the relaxing and elegant decor. The waiter has worked at other Japanese restaurants in London and says that the chef at Wabi is better and more original. They are trying to do something different and create an experience. So far they are achieving it. Now for the food and drinks.

photo(23)We arrived and have a cocktail each. I have the Mexico Sixty Six (Passion Fruit, Cabrito Reposado Tequilla, Vanilla, Black Pepper infused Shochu) and my colleague has the Sugarplum (Honey, Akashi-tai Umeshu, Thienot Brut Champagne) The cocktails are delicious and look amazing. Wabi would be a great place to come and have cocktails with friends or even business associates. The Mexico Sixty Six has the Japanese version of cola in it and packs a peppery punch. It is tasty and different and the ingredients work well together. The Sugarplum is soft and subtle in an ice cold glass. Tasty and refreshing. We then go on to the 10 course tasting meal.

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Otsumami/Snacks

Fire roasted edamame, smoky scratchings & sweet and sour nasu

We start with these wonderfully fire roasted edamame. I love edamame anyway but these are extra delicious and come with pork scratchings and a great sweet and sour nasu. A really great sauce.

We had Weegmullen 2009 Riesling Mandelring at the start of our meal. An interesting German white wine which you might think was sweet but isn’t. It was brave of the waiter to recommend this as it makes you think first and then you like it. It was an excellent choice that went well with the meal.

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Crunchy Temaki Cone

Toro, Wasabi Cream and Charcoal Onions

These are amazing. The waiter tells us to take a cone with some sauce and then dip it in the volcanic salt. Yum. A great mixture of taste and texture.

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Seabass Sashimi

Served with home-made yuzu koji

The seabass was perfect. I have had a lot of seabass in restaurants and this is high in quality and wonderful. It was exciting to tr y the homemade Koji. Koji, if I’m not mistaken, is fermented cooked rice and or soya beans. Koji is at the heart of Japanese cuisine and is used to make soya sauce, miso and sake. Hear it added a nice kick to the seabass and chef should be rightly proud of his/her creation. It was an original and new experience.

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Yellowtail Sashimi

Smokey Nasu and Yuzu Bubbles

This is one of Wabi’s most popular dishes. I can see why. It is just so different. For one, it’s fizzy on top, which is the Yuzu bubbles. This is definitely something to try. It tastes great and so is the texture. That along with the bubbles on top make it a wonderful dish. This dish shows that Wabi are original and are always trying to excel. I am impressed by their bravery and originality.

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‘Lobster and Chips’

Kombu/butter poached Lobster with Uni, Vegetable Chips and Yuzu-Truffle-Egg Dip

Lobster and Chips. Just really good food. The lobster was amazing, great quality and as for the chips, who doesn’t love chips? These ones are just beautifully cooked and crispy. I could eat this every day. You only get a few chips but it is enough and also comes with Roe. The Roe does that satisfying thing of popping in your mouth.

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Warm Loch Duart Salmon

With Lemon Miso, Green Chilli Salsa and Burnt Cedar

This salmon was perfect. It was soft and tender. It came away beautifully when you put your fork in. The salmon comes with mushrooms and a sauce which both contribute to the dish. Yummy. Asian food at it’s best.

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Aged Rib-Eye Ishi-Yaki

Black Beer Marinated Beef, served sizzling with Japanese BBQ Sauce
(£15 supp for Wagyu)

This beef was the best I have ever tasted in my life. It is tender and soft.  It is the Australian version of Kobe beef. The cows have a better life than some humans and are massaged with beer. It was sizzling and came with a excellent sauce. Just beautiful. The sauce is sticky and salty.

We went on to a beautiful and rich Pinot Noir for the beef.

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Todays Sushi: Tuna with Garlic and Green Pepper, Salmon with Celery and Scallops.

This was a real treat. The tune was perfect, great quality, and the scallops and salmon were also of the highest order. They were all already marinated so did not need to come with any sauce. A real triumph of cooking. (or not cooking?)

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Calpico Sorbet with Slow Gin Jelly

This was so wonderfully different. The sorbet was great and the slow gin was a great touch. Wonderful.

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Green Tiramisu with Cocoa Nib Ice Cream

This highly original tiramisu was a great way to end the meal. It was refreshing delicious. It looked great too.

We then had some green tea which was also tasted great.

Wabi are a great restaurant. The food is amazing, the drinks are great and the service is excellent. This along with the sophisticated and calming decor makes Wabi a great place to eat in London. Frost loves.

The tasting menu is £75. Price range is reasonable, medium to high depending on what you order.

Wabi London
36-38 Kingsway
Holborn
London
WC2B 6EY
Phone: 0207.400.5400

Nearest Tube: Holborn.