japanese bento box; grilled scallops & tempura shitake udon; tuna tartar

When we were moving from Australia to the UK, people practically pried themselves free of the woodwork just to do their bit for society and warn us about the lack of good food, and especially good sushi in London. To those people, I say, where the f&*% have you been eating? Because the last 17 months on this side of the globe has taught me that not only does London have good food, there is plenty of it. Even sushi.

I used to have sushi (and note that when I say sushi I actually mean sashimi because growing up in a Chinese household, I’ve had so much rice that anything to do with free rice – except this free rice game – sends me into an involuntary seizure. I don’t even own a rice cooker these days) so frequently that one week into London I was begging my friend to pleeeeease, where can I get sushi? Yes it’s life and death! And so she pointed me in the direction of Hi Sushi, on Frith Street in Soho.

Hi Sushi’s food is average to be perfectly honest (and the chefs are Chinese, not Japanese, tricky), but their trump card is the all you can eat sushi buffet (and not the five-hour-old salmonella harbouring* type of buffet but more like a keep-ordering-if-you-want-for-not-a-nickle-more type of buffet) for circa £15. And with surprisingly fresh salmon sashimi on the menu, all I can say is Bring. It. On.

On the other end of the spectrum (more like the other end of the galaxy) is Harrod’s sushi bar. My oh my, if only I could eat there every day! The freshest, tastiest, melt-in-your-mouth sashimi to have ever landed on my up-until-now utterly deprived tastebuds.  But at £65 for two (not including drinks), my tastebuds will just have to hop off their galaxial pedestal and fraternise with earth-bound sushi that their owner can actually afford.

harrods sushi bar

A more ideal and definitely earth-bound sushi bar is Feng Sushi, a divine little chain of sushi restaurants with a great sustainability program to boot (because guys, as much as you want to ignore it, you know that green is the new  black). We had lunch there yesterday, ordering the Japanese Bento Box (including nigiri, sashimi, tempura and duck rolls), grilled scallops in udon with tempura shitake & vegetables and a tuna tartar which was divine in itself but left me obsessing over the pickled cucumber (I never realised I could get that obsessed over cucumber!).  At a little over £30 (including drinks), Feng Sushi is a newish discovery for me and already has my undivided loyalty (oh all right, except for when I feel like whoring myself out to Hi Sushi).

* Speaking of five-hour-old salmonella harbouring sushi, London is littered with fastfood sushi joints such as Itsu, Wasabi and Yen Sushi.  When I’m desperate, Itsu‘s Salmon and Tuna Junior Pack (five pieces of nigiri) satiates, or even better, Wasabi‘s Chicken Katsu Salad. Yen Sushi doesn’t rock my socks – a recent venture there left me so thirsty I was sucking on the insides of my mouth for moisture. A sign of a little too much MSG perhaps?

Feng Sushi
13 Stoney Street
Borough Market
London SE1 9AD
0207 407 8744

Feng Sushi on Urbanspoon

8 Thoughts on “hunting down good sushi in L-town

  1. Firstly, I love your site and your writing style! Very lively and fun! A great new discovery for me.

    Secondly, try Pham Sushi on Whitecross Street by Old Street tube. Not so expensive (used to be cheaper though) and very good. (Although I do think it’s run by Vietnamese and not Japanese.) Crunchy tuna roll = must have.

  2. Thanks Krista! I’m really just writing down my train of thought so you can imagine how messy my head is 🙂 Speaking of Vietnamese, do you know anywhere where I can find a great vermicelli & grilled pork noodle?? So far have been recommended Cafe East and Green Papaya but haven’t had a chance to get out there yet.

  3. I see you crave sushi with a passion…. me too 😛

    Try Sushi Hiro at Ealing Common, trust me, you WILL enjoy it 🙂

  4. Ahhh… and also before i forget, try dinings too 🙂

  5. We had black cod from Dinings at Taste of London – it was SO good. Definitely gonna go check it out, also read a great review about the place in some magazine 🙂 Sushi Hiro – noted!

  6. Chooken on June 23, 2009 at 2:16 am said:

    I have a good friend who, I just found out…doesn’t like sushi…but in a life altering decision akin to your refusal to let Crocs ruin Panu’s eligability for couple-hood, I decided that I could look past this MASSIVE short comming and have undertaken to complile a Japanese Food of Sydney Education Syllabus AKA like japanese food or die from sashimi poisoning trying. Who the hell doesnt like Japanese food, seriously?!?

  7. Chooken, haha let me know how you go with converting the sushi-hater!

  8. Rice cookers are amazing kitchen appliances. It makes me wonder how we ever lived without them. Today there are several brands and models that also vary greatly in prices. You really won’t need the fancy ones.

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