Restaurants, Japanese West Acton

Just a few doors up from one of London’s most lauded sushi restaurants (Atariya), Kiraku has stiff competition. But this friendly neighbourhood restaurant definitely holds its own. The tatty orange sign and frosted glass windows give little away about what to expect inside. The interior is simple too – pale wood sushi counter and tables, white walls hung with ink drawings of fish, and a TV screening Japanese shows. Nevertheless, the food is not only of a high quality, but good value too. No wonder the dining room is regularly full with a range of expats and local families.

A house speciality of kaisen bara-chirashi saw an array of impeccable fish (tuna, salmon, cured mackerel, boiled prawn) and jewel-like roe scattered across a bowl of generously vinegared rice – a joy for the eyes as well as the palate. Particularly impressive were the tender chunks of octopus, an ingredient that so often is too rubbery. Tempura udon was another enjoyable dish, with a resonant dashi broth and chewy noodles, though the batter on the prawn was a little thick. Drink Japanese beer or saké, served by courteous, efficient staff.



Venue name: Kiraku
Address: 8 Station Parade
W5 3LD
Cross street: Uxbridge Road
Opening hours: Lunch served noon-2.30pm, dinner served 6-10pm Tue-Sun
Transport: Tube: Ealing Common
Price: Dishes £7-£23
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Outside of central London, this has to be one of the best Sushi restaurants around. It's always busy and filled with locals (the area is known as 'Little Japan'). The restaurant itself is a bit plain and canteen-esque but the quality of the fish is excellent. The lunch time bento boxes always appeal and some of their specialities are sublime. The only real negative is that it has increased it prices quite a bit over the last few years but even that is not enough to deter me. 

This is my favourite Japanese restaurant in Ealing, probably in all London. Although Ealing's large Japanese community mean we are spoiled for choice with high quality authentic restaurants, Kiraku is the pick of a very good bunch.  Apparently this is where Heston Blumenthal comes when he fancies Japanese, though haven't seen him yet. The furnishings are pretty basic but who cares when the food is this good.  There's a huge menu to choose from with tons of dishes you would only find in a restaurant catering for Japanese clientele (helpfully with pictures to guide through the unfamiliar), but us locals are equally welcome and well catered for with the best sushi around and a place that's always buzzing.  Service is exemplary and genuinely friendly, come and you won't be disappointed.