Yashin Sushi is a beautiful sushi bar in Kensington. The space is bright and the sushi counter is possibly one of the most beautiful Japanese bars I’ve seen in London.
Three prominent sushi chefs head the Yashin Group of restaurants. Former Nobu superstar Yasuhiro Mineno is the executive chef. He opened Yashin Sushi and Bar in 2010 together with his buddy Shinya Ikeda, a long time disciple of the Japanese culinary art of kaiseki. Since then, they’ve opened another outpost (Yashin Ocean House) and Ikeda’s prodigy from his days at Yumi, Ryuichi Furukawa, has joined as head chef.
I was super lucky to have witnessed Chef Ikeda in action, and I can tell from the looks of his adoring staff how respected the man is. He was mesmerizing to watch, it was like watching someone make art with such calmness.
The “without soy” concept was based on Chef Ikeda’s observation of how people ate their sushi with too much soy sauce; and also how they dip their rolls rice first instead of the fish. I’m not too keen on soy sauce on sushi myself because I love tasting flavours of different types of fish so I knew I was up for a treat!
I love sitting by restaurant counters at places like this. Observing the ingredients, one could tell there’s great precision with knife skills here. More importantly, a great respect for the fish.
I was looking forward to the dressed baby octopus and seaweed salad (£6.50) because God knows I’ll take octopus whenever I can. Honestly, the flavours were subtle which I liked, but it’s the texture that doesn’t sit well on me. A bit of slime and a bit of chew doesn’t necessarily reflect the fresh ingredients.
Normally I don’t like cooked meat in sushi rolls but the sukiyaki with red ginger (£9) roll was rather delicious. The stewed beef melted like butter and the rice had a toasted crunch that embraced it all perfectly.
My sashimi lunch (£25) stole the show. Served with miso soup in a cuppa and a simple side salad, six types of fish served with corresponding garnish. Definitely a sight to behold.
Seabass with citrus rind and mackerel with something I forgot. Equally fresh, even I enjoyed the mackerel which is my usual least fave.
Hamachi with samphire and Salmon with ponzu jelly. MELT. IN. YOUR. MOUTH.
Beautiful tuna with hand-grated wasabi, my favourite. I’d forgotten to photograph the seabream because I had belly thoughts before blogger mode switched on.
I like how the restaurant’s concept highlights beautiful produce from the sea. It’s a good place to appreciate proper sushi, with the impeccable cuts of seafood and stellar knife skills. Service is good, although you get warmth more from the counter peeps than front of house. Food quality is superb and is reflected on the price. But hey, it’s worth it. I promise you.
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