Naru puts more emphasis on cheffy presentation than most Korean restaurants, with zigzagged sauces and stacked ingredients. It’s not a matter of style over substance, though – this is a solid venue for quality Korean classics, with a few innovative touches.
Conspicuously absent from the dining room, which is adorned with wood-framed Hangul calligraphy and paper lanterns, are any table-top barbecues. Instead, the meat and seafood are grilled in the kitchen, then brought sizzling and succulent to the table. The kalbi beef in our set lunch arrived medium-rare. Served on a portable brazier, it continued to cook in its delicious sweet and savoury juices, along with a thick slice of sweet onion. The result? Some of the best kalbi we’ve had in London.
The lunch also included miyeokguk, a nutritious broth packed with seaweed, as well as sticky rice, crunchy spinach with sesame namul, and lightly pickled radish kimchi – for £13.50. Japch’ae, filled with colourful veg and topped with shredded egg white, was deep and earthy in flavour, and came with less sesame oil than you tend to find elsewhere. Unusually, barley tea isn’t available, though Korean beer is.