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Low ceilings, stuccoed walls and 1970s-style red banquettes make a memorable first impression as you enter the low-lit dining room at Asakusa. The venue is undoubtedly characterful and also popular. Small tables are wedged into every nook and cranny of the two-floor restaurant, and we’ve yet to see many of them empty. If you’ve never got much further then sushi when ordering Japanese, here’s your chance to explore what else the cuisine has to offer.

The menu runs the gamut of skewers, homely stews (nabe), tempura and all manner of other dishes, on top of the raw fish and rice combo. For saké novices, there’s also a three-cup tasting menu to ease you in. A dish of simmered bamboo shoots was redolent of earthy katsuobushi (smoked, dried bonito flakes), while the cold udon noodles with tempura and a soy-based dipping sauce had just the right amount of bite. From the list of specials, the raw shredded squid with kimchi was slightly disappointing – tasting under-fermented and a little bitter.

Asakusa may not be the best Japanese restaurant in town, but the range is good and the service friendly, so an evening spent here will never be wasted.


Venue name: Asakusa
Address: 265 Eversholt Street
Opening hours: Dinner served 6-11.30pm Mon-Fri; 6-11pm Sat
Transport: Tube: Camden Town or Mornington Crescent
Price: Main courses £5.50-£13

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:12
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
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1 of 1 found helpful

Everyone knows this is the best Japanese restaurant in London, as is obvious from the reviews. All of my Japanese friends say so too; this is where they'll take you if you ask to eat good Japanese food. It is also possibly the cheapest Japanese restaurant (out of those of decent quality). This is probably why the Time Out reviewer gave it a 3/5 rating—it's not posh enough and doesn't have a pretentious decor. Atmosphere is great. Very cozy environment, nothing over the top. Definition of an excellent restaurant. Time Out get a grip.

1 of 1 found helpful

I love this place. Having eaten Japanese food in Japan, this place definitely compares. The food is great and the prices are even better. I have brought a few of my friends here and would certainly recommend it to anyone who wants to try Japanese food.

1 of 1 found helpful

This is one of my favourite restaurants in London, and the best Japanese food I've had. The restaurant itself has a great atmosphere; it's absolutley tiny but the decor is excellent - very authentic and not OTT. The food is excellent and of a really high standard; the buta kakuni (simmered pork belly) is so tender it falls apart practically by looking at it! Just make sure you book before you go because it is ridiculously hard to get a table without booking. The best part is when you get the bill and realise how reasonable the prices are!

1 of 1 found helpful

Bloody great. Had an awesome meal in a packed to the rafters restaurant. Make sure you book!

1 of 1 found helpful

Amazing japanese traditional food. Simply one of the bestJapanese restraunt in London.

1 of 1 found helpful

Don't know what crack this reviewer was smoking, 3/5? Best Japanese I've had in London for years and quite possibly ever.

1 of 1 found helpful

What is up with TimeOut? Three stars for the best Japanese restaurant in London? Are you kidding me??? Wonderful atmosphere, amazing (reasonably priced) food, feels like being in a real Japanese izakaya, takes me back to my days in Tokyo.

1 of 1 found helpful

This is my absolute favourite restaurant. I don't think Time Out's review has given it justice. Asakusa is easily the best Japanese restaurant in London. The decor isn't great but the food is well worth it.

1 of 1 found helpful

Love this place!!!Recommend highly. Great value for money, tasty food, and no meagre portions- unlike other Japanese restaurants in London.

Nick Stavros Stephens
1 of 1 found helpful

Sushi is fresh and solid 9/10.. Tempura was good but not mind blowing.. Service is solid. Top Class for the price you pay check it out for sure...

1 of 1 found helpful

The Best Japanese izakaya in London the only place that not so pretentious and up tight that you can relax and eat Japanese food, It what must be a former Italian or Greek mock restaurant you can sit and eat delicious food and have excellent drinks. I would definitely recommend booking the fact that its packed from 6 on a monday evening says it all and most of the customers are Japanese. God Bless Asakusa

leila p

i'm baffled as to why time out rated this place 3 stars! this place is one of the best japanese restaurants in london! by far my favorite. c'mon timeout!


Great place and recommended by all the Japanese I know! We went there 2 weeks ago and are planning to go again in the following 2 days for our anniversary dinner. Its small, but the service provided is better than many and I really mean many big restaurant chains! The food is amazing and the cook is real Japanese! All of this comes to a real amazing price! I do not understand how the Timeout rating could be that low as all the people without exception gave Asakusa 5/5 stars. I am someone who enjoys going to many high and low class restaurants but previously have not bee bothered leaving a review. Well now I do! Thanks for the experience and I recommend this restaurant to anyone who wants to eat real Japanese food!