So what is Kurobuta? Is a good question. Japanese for sure, but not in the traditional sense. Fusion, kind of but also not really. For me this is creative Japanese, or even modern Japanese, taking what we know and love a step further. Kurobuta started as a pop up on the Kings Road, except it hasn’t popped down and demand was so high a second Kurobuta has found its home in Connaught village (moments from Edgware Road and Hyde Park.) Kurobuta is owned by Scott Hallsworth ex King of the Nobu kitchen. When glancing at the menu you may recognise some of the food from Nobu, however this place has a way more relaxed vibe than Nobu and in my opinion a far more creative menu.

The vibe  is small plates/sharing/tapas/meze however you like to refer to it. The menu is split into different sections – snacks, cold/raw, robata BBQ, Junkfood Japan, something crunchy, significant others, maki and sushi. At first the sheer number of sections can be daunting, take your time and make sure you absorb every last dish. A few of my highlights – rice crisps with avocado and jalapeno dip, a good solid snack! With what else was coming up I wanted my grains and greens quota, which came perfectly in a salad from the raw section, with added naughtiness from the honey/soy dressing.  From the BBQ section, pork belly in steamed buns with spicy peanut soy sauce, these were honestly too good, I have dreamt about them multiple times since, yes the meat was tender, yes the buns were the right amount of dough -i-ness but it is the concoction of flavours that really sets these alight. The peanut soy sauce is a pure addiction, I ended up adding it with every dish on the menu, it was sickly salty. Junk Food Japan, what a cool section, although a tough one to make decisions in. I was tempted by the wagyu beef sliders in a brioche bun, but decided it wasn’t out there enough, so went with the tuna sashimi pizza, yes you did hear right! So the base was what I would describe as a taco or a proper Mexican nacho, topped with strips of tuna sashimi along with truffle ponzu, red onions and green chilies. You only live once! Nasu Dengaku was my choice from the ‘significant other’ category – sticky miso grilled aubergine with candied walnuts. When this dish arrived I mistook the chunks of aubergine for chicken, I guess I am too used to having aubergine in slices. The aubergine was cooked to perfection, super tender, it kind of melted in my mouth and the sauce again was completely addictive, as in so good that I wanted to lick the plate.

Wow, what a roller-coaster of intense flavours and textures and still more to come. The finale – Jelly doughnut pistachio parfait, excuse me?! This was made up of pistachio parfait, limoncello jelly, matcha meringue, hazelnut and chocolate mini doughnuts. It may sound like too much, too many moving parts, but this dessert fitted together like a dream, the contrasting flavours married together in sweet harmony, a true delight.

Kurobuta is so hot it hurts, the food and the vibe, there is something different about this place.  You can make this restaurant what you want it to be, a special occasion, date night, group mayhem or a casual pop in. Kurobuta will seemingly adapt to your needs. I can’t stay away, so any occasion is an excuse to book this place, hurry, make a reservation.


Il Baretto


A forgotten favourite of mine in magical Marylebone is Il Baretto. For me, it has been reincarnated/returned to my radar owing to the opening of the new King of London hang outs, CHILTERN FIREHOUSE. Yes, it does deserve caps lock! Andre Balaz’s new hotel and restaurant is so cool you almost feel physical pain, well not really, but it definitely raises your resting heart rate due to the pure electricity running through the place.

After drinks at the Firehouse, with even big hitters being turned away for food and the fact I have already sampled their delights, we decided Il Baretto was the perfect choice.  With a vibrant atmosphere, good food and a sprinkle of slick chicness, we trotted over the road.

I really had forgotten how much I love this menu. It is full of well known Italian classics and some other less well known treats from small villages in Italy. As we were seated, pizzas were twirled out to the adjacent table. Immediately, pizza was all I could think about. You may already know my rule with pizza, simply – keep it simple. I went for the bufala mozzarella  and rocket. I did, however, manage to divert my attention from pizza to order a starter or two. With too many good options, we shared an array amongst the table. The zucchini chips are to die for, you may as well order two bowls to start with, one is definitely not enough. Other highlights – the seared yellowfin tuna and fennel, a char-grilled giant octopus tentacle, the bufala mozerella salad with artichokes and wild garlic leaves were all divinely fresh and bursting with flavour.

The piece de la resistance, my darling pizza was danced in front of me. Honestly,it was one of the lightest, freshest pizzas I have tasted in London. I could taste the love, care and finest ingredients that had gone into this delicious Italian staple. Pizzas in London, in fact anywhere but Italy can often be a letdown and not live up to your expectations. Yet with this pizza, I was completely overwhelmed. Will you be able to tear yourself away from the pizzas to order anything else? If you are able to, try the homemade pappardelle with lamb ragu. Again, it tastes even better than you imagine from the menu, super tender meat, with a rich, almost creamy but still tomato-ey enough sauce.

In true Italian style, the traditional tiramisu and selection of ice creams will mean you finish on a high.

So the opening of CF is great for London. The fact that Il Baretto is on its doorstep is better than a cherry on top. Traditional Italian dining in a glamorous setting! Perfect for a special occasion or when you fancy dinner after drinks at CF.





From the owners of Singh beer, Asian Street food a fusion of East meets West. A restaurant impossible to not want to try! Just when you thought London had every single type of restaurant you could ever imagine, something slightly different begs for you to try. This is the first of its kind in Europe. The original mother-ship is in Bangkok and more focused on street food. I like the authenticity of having a restaurant in London that has previously only existed in Thailand. Pacata is located right in the heartbeat of The city; theatre land and shopping central – Covent Garden. It is tucked down a glorious side street so far enough away from the crowds but still with plenty of vibes!

This should simply be described as a treasure trove, not least due to the delicious food but also the intricate interior. It is filled with interesting vintage pieces as if from someone’s home. The menu has been designed by the world’s first and only Michelin starred ramen chef, Yasuji Morizumi. He is a man who has a deep understanding of Asian food and is particularly passionate about the fusion of foods from different cultures and the actual moment when the fusion occurs during the cooking process.

To start, the popcorn chicken and chicken satays are mouthwatering, I can honestly say  they are the most succulent, melt-in-mouth chicken satays I have ever tasted (and I have tasted quite a few.) Both of these dishes are so addictive, we had to order doubles! For the main event, after knowing who has designed the menu, you are drawn to try the ramen. An alternative is to make sure one person in your group chooses it so at least you can sample it. My friend did the honours! It did not disappoint, with the perfect balance of creaminess from the coconut and punch from the chilli. I chose the seabass. How western I hear you say! However, not at Pacata as it was served with a choice of massaman or green thai curry sauce. Again with this fusion dish, it is the balance of flavours and the lightness of the fish with the fragrant curry sauce that makes this dish a complete dream.

The dessert  menu is largely based around green tea. Don’t be put off, embrace it! The green tea brownie served with green tea ice cream is a real treat. This is a dessert  which doesn’t leave you feeling uber guilty. In fact, it almost felt nourishing but was still a glorious treat. How refreshing to have a different take on the queen of British desserts – the brownie.

I love the creativity of the whole menu and the new flavours that creative flair brings. I must also mention the cocktails. Like the food, they are  super creative and most include a hint of Singh beer which may sound odd but makes for a refreshing crazy drink. Pacata is perfect a respite during retail therapy in Central London -ideal  for pre/post theatre and also a great date option!

Chotto Matte

A catch up with friends I haven’t seen forever, somewhere new and fun in Soho, the classic age old question?

Chotto Matte. It opened late in 2013, from the owners of Nobu and ping pong and I guess this fits nicely in the middle. Soho restaurants more often than not – QUEUES and can only seat 12 people, refreshingly this is neither. You can make a reservation and the restaurant is set across 2 large, gapingly modern floors. It kind of has a nightclub feel inside, everything is glass, dark and conceptual with splashes of neon modern art.

What about the food, I hear your cry? Well it is a fusion (course it is) Japanese and Peruvian, which is new to new to me and I am pleased to say is one of the most glorious of mixes. The menu is built for sharing, they recommend 3 dishes per person, I would say you may need 4. The menu ranges from standard sushi and terreyaki dishes to far more interesting concoctions. I had the most delicious vegetable tartar, is that even possible, YES! Dishes I had never heard of , nehi? Try them it’s fun, a new fusion to London where I guarantee you will learn something, eat beyond delicious food and be surrounded by a super buzzy atmosphere AND you can make a reservation.

The fusion fashion is ON!

Flesh and Buns

Do not be scared by the name, Flesh and Buns is the mastermind of Japanese restaurant royalty Ross Shonhan (ex Head chef of Nobu and Zuma) This is his second London restaurant, the first Bone Daddies a ramen bar in Soho.

Flesh and buns is dedicated to the HIRATA BUN – a Taiwanese steamed bun that is served DIY with different meat and fish. This is different to any other restaurant in London right now and is something new and fresh if you think you have had enough of the London scene or simply want to remind yourself what a treat the London scene truly is.

To start you can choose from your standard sushi – ish options, all wonderful but not Nobu. For the main event you can choose a range of different meats and fishes, all of which are served with the most tantalisingly sounding sauces you ever did hear – chicken with yuzu kosho rub or seabass with coriander miso. Each of these comes with a Japanese salad and you need to order the hallowed buns separately. They are delicious, packed with flavours and new sensations.

The restaurant is filled with a fun vibe and was overflowing on a cold Tuesday night. Where isn’t in London? One more thing you HAVE to order the S’MORE for dessert. Based on the popular American desert the Japanese twist here is green tea flavoured Chocolate and it comes with your very own table top fire to roast the marshmallows. I need one NOW. The perfect place for a catch up with friends, a fun date or even a large party.