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Published March 23rd 2019
Notting Hill's best Japanese restaurant
The first thing you will notice about this place is the amazing artwork on the outside wall. As the building itself is quite unusual, being that it is a triangular shaped corner building, the artwork running along the front edge of the building. The image looks vaguely ethereal, but on closer inspection is Lady Kinoko, a street art masterpiece by the Irish street artist Fin DAC. The connection now makes sense, as the bottom level of the mural leads directly to Ukai, a Japanese bar and restaurant that is actually a lot more than that.
For a start, the food is not just Japanese but is influenced by the Mediterranean and South America too. The same applies to the cocktail list, where Japanese sake and whisky are combined in many different exciting ways. There are some really exciting items on both menus - especially look out for the hot stone rice or have a nibble on something from the Robata grill, like the ever popular Chicken Yakitori, and on the drinks side a lovely Mochi, or if you prefer something a little more classic, how about a mojito (with a Kyoto inspired twist)?
Something this good always has another dimension, and Ukai does too - live music abounds at the weekend, where you can see live jazz, live soul, or mixtures along those lines, so really worth a look and listen to.
Ukai has it all - great Pan-Asian food, carefully crafted cocktails and fantastic atmosphere. So whether your here for a quick tipple or are ready to take on the substantial menu - there's something here for you.