The Best Japanese Restaurants In London

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You will be spoiled for choice as we recommend the best Japanese restaurants in London. With so much to choose from, be sure to book your reservation and enjoy fine dining at some of the top exclusive restaurants in the city.

Flesh & Buns

Flesh & Buns in Covent Garden is a testament to the culinary creativity and fusion that defines the city’s food scene. This Japanese-inspired eatery captivates diners with its modern twist on traditional fare, where the art of sharing and indulgence is encouraged. Over ten years, the chefs at Flesh & Buns have honed a menu that balances complexity with accessibility, presenting dishes that resonate with a wide array of tastes.

Central to the restaurant’s allure is its signature dish, the hirata bun. These soft, fluffy steamed buns serve as a canvas for various fillings, including crispy duck leg, pork belly, and soft-shell crab, making every bite a discovery of flavours. The menu extends beyond these buns to include an array of maki, sashimi, and robata grilled delights, showcasing the breadth of Japanese cuisine with a unique London flair.

Flesh & Buns’ dining experience is interactive and delicious. Guests are invited to construct their meals from platters of steamed buns and fillings, fostering a casual and engaging communal atmosphere. The restaurant’s design, featuring a communal dining area, complements this ethos, creating an ideal setting for groups looking for an immersive culinary adventure.

Flesh & Buns stands out as a bold expression of culinary artistry in a city where the fusion of cultures and cuisines is celebrated. It is a vibrant, sensory journey through Japan’s flavours, tailored for London’s eclectic tastes.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

Sticks’n’Sushi originated in Copenhagen and has grown to several locations: five in London, one in Cambridge, and one in Oxford. The interior projects a Scandinavian feel through the minimalist, sleek, and stylish atmosphere, which creates a serene ambience, the perfect setting to unwind after a stressful day at work. This restaurant does exactly as it says by serving many sushi plates paired with various hot foods placed onto yakitori sticks.

The sharing platters enable you and your party to enjoy the succulent flavours; a bonus is the affordable prices, permitting you to eat like royalty by exploring the depths of the exciting menu together. Enjoy the ‘fireworks’ sharing platter for £120 for 3 people. It comprises a maki, carpaccio, cold plates, and meat sticks. The presentation of the food is unforgettable, with eruptions of colour across the wooden plates – making the food Instagram-worthy.

Remember to try the selection of desserts, ranging from dark chocolate fondant with a caramelized hazelnut to white chocolate mousse with raspberry foam. Sticks’n’Sushi’s versatility makes it one of the best Japanese restaurants in London. With high-quality and perfectly crafted food, what more could you want?

Chotto Matte

The best Japanese restaurants in London

Chotto Matte has rightly been hailed as one of the best Japanese restaurants in London due to its lively and vibrant atmosphere. Upon arrival, guests are awoken by bursts of colour sprawled across the wall crafted by Tokyo-based graffiti artist Houxo Que, which parallels the urban landscape of Soho. Under the direction of Kurt Zdesar, who brought Nobu to London, this restaurant is set across three floors comprising of multi-level seating within the cocktail lounge, sushi bar, robata grill and restaurant. The menu boasts a variety of foods ranging from sashimi to tempura with fiery connotations of South American flavours.

The tasting menu (£40-£70 per person) is popular with groups and creates a personal touch, enabling people to share this unique dining experience. Combining Japanese and Peruvian dishes produces strong flavours and bright colours, creating an experience you will never forget.

The Araki

The best Japanese restaurants in London

Escape the city to a hidden retreat tucked away behind the busy landscape of inner London to The Araki. This restaurant has been considered one of London’s best and most expensive Japanese restaurants. The carefully selected chef’s menu will set you back £300 per person, excluding beverages; however, the individuality of this Three Michelin Star restaurant makes the price tag worth it. The dining area is small and simplistic as it caters to nine guests lucky enough to watch one of the most influential sushi masters in the world, Mitsuhiro Araki, perfectly arrange the sashimi with exquisite attention to detail.

Araki uses the highest quality ingredients, with the fish being sourced from Europe and the rice originating from a farm in the Japanese city of Saitama owned by his father-in-law. This is most certainly projected through the taste of the sushi, often paired with various ingredients, including black caviar and white alba truffle, adding little bursts of flavour to the decadent menu. Dinner sittings are available from Tuesday to Sunday with two-and-a-half-hour slots at 6 pm and 8.30 pm. If you are a sushi lover, book a table at the Araki to experience the refined and theatrical soul of Japanese cuisine and culture.

Sake No Hana

The best Japanese restaurants in London

Part of the renowned Hakkasan group, Sake No Hana is a sophisticated Japanese establishment that emulates exclusivity for its guests. The architecture creates a calming and serene atmosphere, with thick bamboo poles hanging over the ceiling, representing the beauty of Japan’s natural landscape. Sake No Hana is regarded as one of the best Japanese restaurants in London due to its extensive menu, divided into numerous sections.

Many recommend the Umai Sushi Saturdays menu, which includes a seven-course meal with a variety of dishes beginning with a light miso soup, a choice of Nigiri, adding a breezing scent of the sea to your palette, and a selection of decadent meats. This meal is also accompanied by a bottle of champagne to share and a cocktail at an astonishing £49 per head – this is great value for money for such a well-respected restaurant. Another exciting concept this restaurant offers is the interactive sushi classes whereby guests are taught by the head chef, Hideki Hiwatashi, who has over 15 years of diligent culinary training behind him.

After perfecting the art of sushi making, guests can enjoy their handmade sushi, followed by lunch, champagne, sake, and a gift bag upon their departure. This master class enables you to go behind the scenes at one of the best Japanese restaurants in London to gain new skills and also have fun! Sake No Hana is known amongst fashionable and elite circles as ‘The New Nobu,’ so book a table to dine at this unique destination.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

If you are looking for a high-end Japanese restaurant, Zuma is the perfect place. The soft lighting and simple decorations make the atmosphere sophisticated and elegant, paralleled with a brilliant clientele. The ever-growing fan base makes Zuma a hotspot for A-Listers, including Kate Moss, Beyonce and Kim Kardashian. The eclectic menu reflects the stylish nature of this restaurant through an elevation of traditional dishes, making it appeal to a modern crowd.

The dishes showcase contemporary ingredients, ranging from roasted lobster and grilled sea bass to a range of seafood selections, including maki and sashimi, topped with chilli mayonnaise. The huge selections of fresh Japanese foods are presented beautifully but subtly, letting the taste of the fresh foods become the main focal point.

This restaurant comes at an expense, with the average meal costing £100 per head; however, in return, you are offered great food, impeccable service and an exquisite atmosphere. Zuma intertwines modern chic with a traditional ambience, making it one of London’s best Japanese restaurants.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

Tucked away in the prestigious Ham Yard of Piccadilly Circus, the Engawa is a small yet luxurious restaurant that brings a unique and authentic Japanese cuisine to London. The Engawa specialises in the delicacy of the expensive and highly sought-after Kobe beef, often described as the ‘caviar of meat’. The dedication to this meat is certainly reflected through the tasting menus comprising three, five or eight courses ranging from £65 to £95 per head.

The tender and flavourful Kobe beef is filtered through the courses but broken up by sashimi, sushi and fried fish to create a refreshing taste. If you fancy something lighter, the 14-piece assorted bento box is the perfect choice, as it is simple yet perfectly executed. The presentation is second to none, as the boxes filled with sushi and sashimi assortments create a more accessible way to explore the beautiful selection of fish.

They are also presented atop a giant brick of ice and in traditional Japanese bowls and plates, creating a real taste of Tokyo. The Engawa is one of the best Japanese restaurants in London as it embodies the authenticity of Japanese cuisine by priding itself on using the freshest and best-sourced ingredients, causing each mouthful to burst with flavour.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

Set in the heart of glamorous Mayfair, Novikov is a stylish and chic restaurant with plenty to offer. It’s hard not to be mesmerised from a distance, but venture inside, and you’ll discover a cool and contemporary open-plan interior with a rustic twist of traditional chandeliers. What makes this restaurant even more special is the colourful display of fresh seafood and vegetables, creating the feel of an Asian market.

This gives you a sneak peek of the luxurious ingredients you will taste. Novikov’s boasts an impressive menu with some favourites, including the black cod perfectly paired with black truffle shavings, saffron sweetcorn dumplings and the tuna jalapeno sashimi, which adds a fiery twist to such a long-established dish.

After your meal, head downstairs to the underground lounge and sip on the gorgeous choice of cocktails mixed with hints of spices, lemon grass and fresh basil, elevating the Japanese atmosphere even further. The efficient service, lively atmosphere and decadent dishes make Novikov one of the best Japanese restaurants in London.

Sushi Samba

The best Japanese restaurants in London

On the 38th and 39th floor of the Heron Tower, Sushi Samba offers a sample of a unique fusion of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian flavours, making it one of the best Japanese restaurants in London. The impressive location provides restaurateurs with astonishing panoramic views of London due to the floor-to-ceiling glass windows, creating a distinctive dining experience. Enjoy the ‘TASTEOFSAMBA’ menu for a maximum of eight people with a combination of plates ranging from Gyozas to Nigiri to Lamb, which look good but taste even better! The introduction of the vegan menu reflects Sushi Samba’s universality as it caters to all tastes.

The limitless flavours are carried through the extensive cocktail and premium sake menu, which are the perfect accompaniment with the food. After your meal, grab a cocktail and enjoy the eye-catching views of London on the rooftop terrace.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

The Ikeda is a hidden gem in Mayfair with an intimate and minimalist interior accompanied by soft lighting and simple decoration to keep things elegant. The simplistic atmosphere causes the perfectly executed food to be the main focus, permitting you to be in for a treat. The menu showcases a variety of mains, with the favourites being the black cod paired with miso sauce and the pork belly slow-cooked in sake and soy sauce to add rich and deep flavours to the succulent meat.

The dishes are cooked so perfectly that they will melt at the touch of your chopstick! The Ikeda takes inspiration from traditional Japanese dishes through a wide selection of skilfully sliced sashimi and carefully crafted sushi assortments abounding with colours and flavours. The Ikeda can be regarded as one of the best Japanese restaurants in London due to the use of the most rare Japanese imports. The emphasis on seasonal ingredients makes you feel as though you are dining in Tokyo, with the prices paralleling the sky-high quality of food. Finding a restaurant that produces such a minimalist and traditional atmosphere is rare, so book a table to experience this Japanese paradise.

Black Roe

The best Japanese restaurants in London

Tucked away in what seems to be a magical Asian rainforest is Black Roe, a swanky Japanese restaurant with a fusion of Hawaiian-inspired dishes, which makes it stand out from the crowd of its Mayfair competitors. The dark interior is elevated by a gorgeous flower display hanging in a downward motion from the ceiling, creating a mystical ambience that guests can gaze at. The show-stopping floral creations are also intertwined with various foods ranging from Japanese classics with the prawn tempura, perfectly crisp on the outside and lightly smothered in truffle aioli.

This is combined with a variety of Hawaiian-inspired dishes, ranging from a yellow tail poke accompanied by a spicy salsa to a beef tataki poke paired with roasted sesame soy. These unique dishes are beautifully presented with a light dressing and finished with an arrangement of edible flowers, which adds a continuous seductive elegance to the floral theme.

After your meal, sip on floral-inspired cocktails created by professional mixologists. Try the popular ‘hau’oli ka waii’ cocktail, which combines gin, vanilla, and lemons to trigger your taste buds and add a citrus-infused ending to your hearty meal.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

The Sakagura is an enclave away from the busy Mayfair area and is a fantastic addition to London’s repertoire of Japanese restaurants. As you enter, you are greeted with dimmed lighting, dark wooden furniture and copper materials, which combine an industrial feel to this traditional restaurant. The menu incorporates sushi and sashimi with excellent cuts of meat. One of the most popular dining options is the ‘Ishiyaki Stone Steak Set’, where you can cook a pick of Argentinian steaks just as you like on a hot lava stone and watch it sizzle away. Choices of sauces are available as an accompaniment to the steak including fresh wasabi, horseradish, misodare and balsamic teriyaki, adding seasoning and heat to the meat.

This ‘cook your own’ style is popular in Japan, which produces a sense of authenticity and interactivity to this restaurant. After your main course, ensure you have enough room for the luscious-tasting ice creams with options of flavours, including dark chocolate with a hint of wasabi and a soy sauce caramel to refresh your taste buds.

The conventional undertones combined with modern adjustments bring together everything we love about Japanese culture, making Sakagura one of the best Japanese restaurants in London.

Aqua Kyoto

The best Japanese restaurants in London

Aqua Kyoto is a fashionable and up-market restaurant in the west end’s heart. The dining area caters for over 100 people. It is fashionably designed and well composed in black and crimson red, with a large red spiral lantern placed on the ceiling to add a soft glow and an oriental design to this restaurant.

The ‘experience menu’ showcases signature dishes for the whole table, beginning with 12 pieces of sashimi topped with wasabi and mayo, with lamb cutlets brought alive with tomato miso and king crab soba noodles bursting with intense flavours. The variety of the menu means that there is a dish for every taste. The £75 per head price is easy to understand, including a glass of wine and Akita Shurui Seizoh sake to wash down the flavoursome dishes.

Aqua Kyoto is perfect for food and cocktails, which you can sip perched high atop the rooftop terrace with glorious Tokyo-style views over central London. This unique dining destination is one of the best Japanese restaurants in London, and you certainly should not miss out on it.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

Dinings is one of Chelsea’s best-kept secrets, located in a grade II listed building in a hidden and private courtyard, this restaurant has become a truly up market destination. The open-plan dining area is accompanied by large windows, which take centre stage and exude a minimalist and glamorous setting. Dinings prides itself on creating “an eating experience for guests that pushes the boundaries of Japanese cuisine”, and we couldn’t agree more.

This restaurant endeavours to create a sense of exclusivity with a commitment to imaginative and inventive food without detracting from the simplicity of good sushi. Choose from a range of photogenic dishes, including scallops, shrimp, sea bass, and tuna, adding a dash of culinary royalty to Japanese cookery.

Combining traditional Japanese cuisine with modern European elements, such as mini burger buns topped with teriyaki wagyu beef and shrimp tempura, adds a creative twist to such well-established and customary foods. This minimal and majestic restaurant oozes luxury with its innovative flourishes, making it one of the best Japanese restaurants in London.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

Roka is an award-winning Japanese restaurant that has become so successful that it has expanded across the exclusive London hotspots of Aldwych, Mayfair, and Canary Wharf. For £90 per head, you can experience the 13-plate premium tasting menu full of mouthwatering dishes, starting with a sequence of yellow tail sashimi before moving on to seared beef, black cod, scallop skewers and a full dessert platter.

The refined elegance of these outstandingly crafted dishes is so delicious that you’ll want to order even more. Another exciting element of this restaurant is the robata grill, placed in the centre of the dining area, upholding a theatrical aspect to your dining experience. The chefs use a range of types of charcoals within the robata grill, adding unique, smoky, and bold flavours to the food and making it stand out from its competitors.

If you are ordering from the Robata grill, try the spiced chicken wings topped with sea salt and lime and the 100g pure-breed Japanese wagyu, which is cooked so perfectly that it will melt in your mouth. After your meal, head downstairs to the atmospheric basement bar and enjoy the exquisitely designed Japanese-styled cocktails ranging from an apple pear bellini to a rose petal martini, adding a fruity finish to your flavoursome meal.


The best Japanese restaurants in London

Umu is a 2 Michelin star secret sushi hideaway in a discreet venue in Mayfair where guests enter through a hidden wooden door to a refined, elegant, tranquil restaurant. The beautiful decorations and low-level lighting add a Zen-like atmosphere to produce a soothing vibe. ‘Umu’ translates as ‘born as nature’, which reflects the restaurant’s commitment to incorporating local and fresh ingredients into the beautiful dishes, creating a timeless element to this modern take on Japanese classics.

The executive chef Yoshinori Ishii added to this uniqueness by teaching fishermen on the Cornish coast to use the traditional Japanese fishing method ‘Ikejime’ to preserve natural flavours and textures, ensuring the best quality fish. Umu has one of London’s most expensive tasting menus, which costs £310 for two people, with a £95 additional charge for wine pairings. This price is easy to understand as the menu features an eight-course menu of unique items, challenging every tasting sensation you have.

This menu permits you to explore an elaborate range of dishes, from Scottish lobster tempura to wagyu beef and tuna tartar topped with Exmoor caviar, which adds a subtle and sharp elegance to each dish. The combination of inventive and exquisite flavours clearly demonstrates why Umu is one of the best Japanese restaurants in London; there is simply nowhere else like it.

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