Ginza Onakada

Ginza Onakada was previously known as Matsuri which is located in London St James. The restaurant has gone through a total transformation with a new name and a full renovation. It has moved away from the concept of teppenyaki to bring back traditional Japanese food.

The whole restaurant has been modernised with a sleek entrance. It is no longer focusing on teppenyaki but they have retained a small section that can seat around 4 people. Also there is a small sushi bar room where you can enjoy a sushi experience up close with the sushi chef.

We were seated in the main dining area where you can order from the a la carte that includes a range of sushi and robata.

Gina Onakada

We started our lunch with the Cornish crab meat chawan mushi (£12). This is a traditional savory custard flavoured with bonito soup. The taste reminded us of dobin mushi. A light clear soup that is served in a clay teapot which was available at previously known Matsuri and still is on the menu at Ginza Onakada.

The chawan sushi was beautifully steamed and arrived pipping hot at our table. 

Ginza Onakada

The sushi assortments comes in a choice of 8 pieces (£32) or 12 peices (£50). The 12 pieces worked out to be more expensive for each piece of nigiri as it came with more premium fishes. Our selection included one price of o-toro as well as one piece of seared Wagyu beef.

Each sushi was beautiful with good quality cuts including a lovely melt in your mouth o-toro. Even the Wagyu beef melt in your mouth which made it a good pairing as nigiri.

Ginza Onakada

This was follow by Inaniwa chilled udon with prawn and vegetable tempura, served with traditional dipping sauce (£28). The udon was a delight to have which was thinner and flatter than regular udon. It was cooked perfectly to a texture that was not too soft and still has that chewy texture. A dish that is refreshing which make it great for the warmer weather. 

Ginza Onakada

Ginza Onakada serves a selection of meat and seafood from the robata including Kobe beef (ranging from £130 – £145 depending on the cuts) and Japanese Wagyu beef (£71-£86 depending on the cuts). We opted for the Wagyu fillet beef (£86) which was expensive but it was really good. Each piece of beef just melt in your mouth and was truely good piece of Wagyu beef.

Ginza Onakada

So far every dish we had was impressive and each one was organised by the restaurant to come at the right time and in the right order.

However, I was slightly disappointed with dessert selection where there was no traditional Japanese dessert. The choices were more French inspired with the use of Japanese most known ingredients – matcha. Back in the days of Matsuri I would always looked forward to their Fireball ice cream. It is a shame that Ginza Onakada no longer on the menu although this is a dessert for teppenyaki.

Although dessert selection was not attractive we did try the chocolate fondue served with matcha ice cream mochi. I was expecting the chocolate fondue to have a melting centre. However, I am not sure if the restaurant had meant for it not to have a melting chocolate centre or it was over-cooked. 

Ginza Onakada

Overall it was a wonderful experience with impressive service. Apart from the dessert it was good food that was well executed. But dining at Ginza Onakada does come at a price which is not affordable to many of us.

I was there during the 50% off soft launch period and spent around £60 per person including service charge and green tea. This meant on full price we would had to pay around £120 per person. Even with the offer this meal I consider a special treat.

Ginza Onakada
15 Bury Street,
London,
UK,
SW1Y 6AL

https://onodera-group.com/uk

Matsuri

It would not be the first time that I have had teppan-yaki at Matusri restaurant but it is my first time at Matsuri St James. A few years ago there was a second branch in Holborn which was my favourite place to have dinner. I would love the teppan-yaki room that is downstairs of the restaurant. It was more quieter and felt more of a private dining area. Unfortuntely, a few years ago Matsuri Holborn had a fire incident and never reopened.

Matsuri St James’ is the original branch and is bigger with many more teppan-yaki tables.  There is a separate room which has a sushi bar for those who do not want to have teppan-yaki. But if you at Matsuri then you want to have a teppan-yaki dinner.

There are various teppan-yaki course, as well the option to call it separate. We went for the Matsuri teppan-yaki dinner course (£49) which started with an appetise.

Seasonal Hors d’oeuvre

Dobin Mushi which is a traditional Japanese seafood broth that is served in a dobin pot. Inside the broth you will find prawn, chicken and mushroom.

To enjoy the flavour of Dobin Mushi, you would squeeze the lime in to the broth and use the cup to drink. The lime give it a refreshing taste to the broth.

There is a choice of assorted Sashimi or Tempura. I went for the tempura which included king prawn and vegetables.

Finally the teppan-yaki section of the meal arrives, where we can watch our chef in action.

The Matsuri teppan-yaki dinner courses has a range of selection to choose in the course, and all comes serve with grilled vegetables, steamed rice and Miso soup.

  • Free Range Chicken Teriyaki
  • Assorted Seafood
  • Scottish Rib-Eye Steak
  • Scottish Fillet Steak (plus £5 additional charge)
  • Half Lobster (plus £15 additional charge)

For additional charge, we had the option to change the steamed rice for steamed brown rice (£3.50), egg fried rice, garlic butter rice or spicy fried rice for £4.70 supplement.

I order the assorted seafood which comes with salmon, prawns, squids and scallops. I asked for no squid and got additional scallops as replacement.

For those who like there beef then the steak is a great option for the teppan-yaki. As with any places that serves steak you have the choice to decided how you like your steak to be cook – rare, medium, well done etc.

I actually think the highlight of Matsuri teppan-yaki is the dessert part if you select the fireball ice cream. As standard the Matsuri tepppan-yaki dinner course comes with sorbert as dessert, but I recommend to pay the addition for the fireball ice cream.

It is £3.50 additional charge for the standard fireball ice cream and £5 for the fireball ice cream with Mango. I actually think the standard fireball ice cream is sufficient, unless you a fan of mango.

The highligh is as the name of the dessert, it goes on fire!
Fireball ice cream is pancake base served with block of melted vanilla ice cream and pineapple. It is a nice dessert but slightly different to the one I had in Matsuri Holborn which used a thinly sponge base.

If I had the choice then I preferred Matsuri Holborn as love the chef that would always cook our food and tell as funny jokes. It was all entertaining and although simple food it was cooked beautifully.

I felt there was something missing when we were dining at Matsuri St James. It did not have the same WOW factor that I found in Matsuri Holborn.

(Prices correct at the time of dining)

Matsuri
15 Bury Street
London
SW1Y 6AL

http://www.matsuri-restaurant.com