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Sosharu – Izakayu dining in Farringdon

My excitement levels when I heard Jason Atherton was opening another eatery not far from my stomping ground were pretty high. It’s billed as an Izakayu-style restaurant (posh Japanese pub in other words): I was further intrigued as it was a far cry from his usual ventures. Pollen Street Social being my personal favourite.

a Farringdon Restaurant

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Taking over the old Turnmills site, this Clerkenwell restaurant takes its lead from the legendary nightspot with its moody, dark lighting. The similarities stop there as the huge space is carved into sections by large wooden latticed partitions and staff with Evisu aprons create a very slick and hip vibe.

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We arrived at our table straight from the restaurants basement bar 7 Tales. We were pleasantly surprised by the underground Tokyo-esque drinking den, so had high hopes for our evening meal. You can read all about 7 Tales here.

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The menu is divided into many different sections and a lot of the dishes are classed as small plates, creating a casual sharing dining experience. We ordered a number of dishes and first up was the open temaki – tuna, scallion tobiko, sushi rice with a squirt of spicy mayonnaise (£7.50). It looked more like a Japanese version of a taco and from the oohhs and ahhhs I heard from the fish corner, it was a real hit.

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As one type of tempura is never enough, we went for three – avocado, broccoli and squid.

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The avocado with dashi soy was delicious (£6), but the winner for me was the broccoli doused in the most glorious spicy kimchi dressing (£5). Pimped up tempura is where it’s at! The squid tempura came topped with papaya, spring onion and chilli (£12).

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The fried goodies were nicely followed by the asian pear and avocado salad with tofu dressing and toasted sesame seeds (£12), which was beautifully flavoured. It rebalanced the tastebuds with its crisp, clean and creamy texture. Almost feeling like a palette cleanser.

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The grilled asparagus, smoked tofu, tomato and dashi jelly (£11) was a wonderful mix of fresh flavours and textures.

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One of the prettiest dishes was the scallops, nori, sweet potato in white ponzu sauce (£12). And the smoked octopus and seaweed salad (£15) was a hit with Mr S finding it very succulent and devouring it in super speed time.

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The tepanyaki kobu-jima cobia with pickled daikon, cucumber and sesame (£14.50) was beautifully and delicately presented. Perfectly cooked and tender.

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The dish I’d been waiting for, the hot yamagata soba noodles came with vegetable tempura, daikon oroshi and ponzu dressing all came in separate pots.

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Sporting a deconstructed style. The noodles are made fresh in-house and were scrumptiously nutty in texture (£18).

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Our finale was the mushroom dashi with pickled mushrooms and mitsuba (£16). For a pot so large I was surprised at the small amount of rice I ended up with. Delicious of course, I was left craving more.

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And we couldn’t leave the place without sampling their sweet treats selection. First up was the strawberry kakigori with strawberry and sake jelly (£8), which came in a bowl of crushed ice.

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I watched as a young lady expertly crushed the ice with a metal Japanese contraption and delicately constructed the dish.

Along with the Japanese rice with coconut mango (£8) and the genmaicha matcha tea (£4) we were in dessert heaven.

Jason Atherton’s foray into the world of Japanese cuisine is very impressive. The venue is slick and trendy and the food exciting. I’m not usually one that raves about Japanese food, being vegetarian, I find that options can be fairly limiting  – Not the case here. I’d definitely be back again perhaps to try the lunchtime menu for two which includes six dishes for a very tempting £29.50 per person.

Do you enjoy Japanese cuisine? Do you have a favourite Japanese restaurant in London? Let me know in the comments box below.

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Sosharu | 64 Turnmill Street | London | EC1M 5RR

sosharulondon.com

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Sosharu, Clerkenwell

17 Comments

  • Kitty Morris 26th June 2016 at 7:05 pm

    wow, all that food looks so beautiful! I’ve never been to a Japanese restaurant but would love to give one a go, all the tofu for veggies!

    • Sima Sthanakiya 26th June 2016 at 9:23 pm

      I highly recommend Japanese food. Healthy too!

  • Sarah 26th June 2016 at 7:09 pm

    I honestly have never tried Japanese food before!
    It looks so beautifully presented!

    • Sima Sthanakiya 26th June 2016 at 9:23 pm

      Go give it a go Sarah. Some of it looked too pretty to eat.

  • Joanna 26th June 2016 at 8:52 pm

    The food looks very well presented but in my opinion, it’s a big expensive for the amount of food you are getting. I think the lunch menu is a much better option than taking the dishes separately. The atmosphere and the decor of the restaurants looks lovely. I like Japanese food and I am looking forward to my upcoming trip to Japan to try some local specialties.

    • Sima Sthanakiya 26th June 2016 at 9:25 pm

      I agree Joanna some of it is, but for our first visit we wanted to try a lot of dishes. Next time I will be trying out their lunchtime special.

  • Rashmi&Chalukya 26th June 2016 at 9:21 pm

    Nice Ambience and great variety of food. Asian pear and avocado salad and Mushroom Dashi grabbed my eyes they look delicious

  • Ana De Jesus 27th June 2016 at 12:43 pm

    The sweet potato in white ponzau sauce looks delicious! I love the look of the nori too, what a great dining experience.

  • Freya Farrington 27th June 2016 at 1:04 pm

    I love this style of dining and the dishes look delicious!

  • Kerry 27th June 2016 at 1:46 pm

    Looks like a fab restaurant! I’m not a huge fan of sea food, so I’m good for everything else except that, it looks delicious!

  • Nya 27th June 2016 at 8:12 pm

    The tofu salad looks so delicious. All the pictures are lovely and the place looks very welcoming as well! Glad you enjoyed your time.

  • Sonnie 28th June 2016 at 4:09 am

    Japanese-ah! I love Japanese food bec. it’s not only delicious, but healthy too! If you are into healthy food, you can also try Viet and Korean foods.

    • Sima Sthanakiya 28th June 2016 at 7:54 am

      Totally agree! I’ve tried Viet not Korean as it looks too meaty for me. Being veggie, a major consideration.

  • Subhadrika Sen 29th June 2016 at 9:59 pm

    Thats some amazing photographs of foods. also, the best I have seen so far. not everyone can capture the essence of foods in photographs and you have done it remarkably. Teach me too please.

    • Sima Sthanakiya 30th June 2016 at 1:07 pm

      Very kind of you. The secret is in having a good camera and lens. Oh and a good eye helps!x

  • Maggie 3rd July 2016 at 10:46 am

    This is definitely on the list and I love the fact that Jason has gone for a more laid back vibe with Sosharu. I love a good meal deal -£29.50 is very reasonably priced!

    • Sima Sthanakiya 3rd July 2016 at 7:22 pm

      You’d love it Maggie. The bar downstairs is worth a visit too! x

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