Shiori

  • Restaurants
  • Japanese
Critics' choice
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Bayswater

Walking down a Bayswater backstreet, we weren’t too surprised to bump into Notting Hill resident Tom Parker Bowles; but a traditional Japanese restaurant, complete with wood and paper screen front, felt a lot more incongruous. Shiori could have been shipped in direct from Japan, as could the intricate, multi-course set meals they serve here. Whether you’ve tried it before or not, this is the place to experience kaiseki ryori – the Japanese version of haute cuisine – in London.

Trained in Kyoto – the birthplace of kaiseki ryori – chef-patron Takashi Takagi and wife Hitomi ran seven-seater Sushi of Shiori in Euston until October last year. Now they’ve upped their game, and their headcount (to 12), offering only tasting menus.

The eight-course Hana menu (at £65, the cheaper of the two evening options – the other’s £105) began with a genteel portion of broccoli-like rapeseed blossom scattered with bonito flakes. Next, a mound of sea bream slivers in a luxurious dressing of rich, sweet monkfish liver. And so our journey continued through a succession of delicate raw and cooked dishes, paired with cups of cold saké.

Celebrating the best of the season, a resonant broth jewelled with soft pillows of sweet snow crabmeat, firm tofu skin (yuba) and a tangle of slippery glass noodles was the pinnacle of the meal.

‘Natsukashi!’ they say in Japanese when reminded of a fond memory, and an evening here was resoundingly reminiscent of Japan. From placemats decorated with seasonal ingredients, to dishes adorned with edible buds and blossoms, a lot of attention has gone into every detail.

Venue name: Shiori
Contact:
Address: 45 Moscow Road
London
W2 4AH
Opening hours: Lunch served noon-3pm, dinner served 6-10.30pm Tue-Sat
Transport: Tube: Bayswater or Queensway
Price: Set lunch £28.50-£50. Set dinner £65-£105

Average User Rating

4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:2
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:0
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Brett Cowie

A brilliant evening. Lovely lowkey setting. Friendly service. Excellent food. Not cheap but worth shelling out for a special occasion. Definitely a place we want to go back to.

Olivier Venturini

A very disappointing meal especially when you look at the price, over £400 for 3 people. We took the mid-price menu at £106 and saw a succession of mini plates, the first 3 or 4 coming straight out of the fridge. We ordered a delicious sake to start with, at £32 for 300ml and then when we were close to dying of hunger, we saw a fish coming, an Halibut way over cooked. You would not expect over-cooked fish in a Japanese restaurant and even less so when it has been praised like it is in those columns but all three plates were. Then we got some delicious sashimi but just a few of them followed by truly exquisite sushis. But they were too few of them: Two plates, one with 2 sushis on it, one with 3. But sushi is really this chef forte. the rest is rather tasteless and underwhelming. I am trying to understand how this can be a recommendation having had the chance to eat in much better Japanese restaurants.