Belgravia is an upperclass oasis in London, where there the streets are clean, the houses white and uniformed and is home possibly to the best Japanese restaurant in the world.
When you arrive at Kouzu Japanese restaurant you are greeted by staff with “Irasshaimase”. It means welcome in Japanese and when you enter this modern, open spaced restaurant you truly do feel it, they want you to feel welcome and they are proud of working there.
We started as always with a cocktail in the bar. Having a drink at the bar before you eat is a good way of seeing the kind of service you will receive. Its also another way to get a sneak preview of the craft they apply to the kitchen. We were impressed; the cocktails were smoothly shaken and served. The two delicious cocktails we tasted made a promise for something extraordinary to come.
The menu at Kouzu is a heavenly parade of Japanese food. We were lucky to have help choosing dishes from the superb Kenichi Kakuta, who is the restaurant manager for Kouzu. He explained and helped us choose our starters:
Yellow tail and white truffle dressing
Beef – Sirloin Amiyaki
A special collection of sushi
All the dishes were extremely well prepared. The dishes were like art pieces, simple but mind-blowingly executed. Kouzu’s secret lies in their use of the best possible products; these are chefs who take pride in making perfection.
Sharing is the way to dine in a restaurant like Kouzu as the menu is so rich in variety. We had Mr. Kakuta roll out a red carpet of dishes: Sushi, Makimono rolls, and Nigiri. It was overwhelming. By the time we had finished we were like fattened calves.
Sushi chef Nobuyuki Yamaguchi showed us the honor to come to our table, and explain how he creates sushi and how he only uses special rice from a certain area in Japan. He also educated us by explaining that there isn’t just one type of soy sauce. Soy sauce has as many varieties as Balsamico.
The desserts we tasted where also sublime, delicate and well executed. Each mouthful had fireworks going off in our mouths. They were a nice way to end a fantastic meal.
Kouzu’s style is clean and sharp and when you first enter you may think it is a little too utilitarian to be pitched as high class. However, when you visit please sit down, order your food, and the penny will drop. Kouzu is all about the food they don’t need a funky or rich décor to please their customers. A visit to Kouzu is all about honesty; a higher experience and they do not cut corners.
Please do yourself the favour, and visit them, it’s a treat, it is an experience and they will not let you down.