If, like me, you’re guilty of enjoying a few too many cocktails but somehow managed to forget all about dinner, then Nobu’s new supper bar has you covered. I visited Nami at Nobu Shoreditch earlier this month and cannot wait to go back. The highly-anticipated Japanese street food cocktail bar opened its doors in November last year, and the food really is outstanding.
For those who have always dreamed of dining at Nobu, but perhaps feel it’s slightly out of their budget for a Friday night meal, should definitely head to Nami. Translating as ‘wave’ in Japanese, Nami is a unique concept featuring great food, cocktails, music and art projections, creating a new form of immersive entertainment in what’s often considered the trendiest part of the capital.
Before my visit I was advised to try a sushi cocktail and the pork belly in particular, so that’s exactly what I did. In fact, my companion and I enjoyed the pork belly appetisers so much, that we ordered a second batch straight away. The confit pork belly is glazed in hot miso and served in pieces of butter lettuce with pickled ginger.
A new Flaming Nami Burger (£22) is also set to launch on March 1st. Set to be an Instagrammer’s dream, the burger is made up of Japanese Wagyu beef, melted rosemary manchego cheese and a cucumber, sesame and pickle garnish. Sandwiched between a light and fluffy tofu bun dotted with sesame seeds, the burger will be served to guests by chefs directly from the Nobu kitchen.
For seafood lovers, there’s plenty on the Nami menu to enjoy. From the salmon tartar with hijiki sauce (£14) and sweet shrimp tempura (£17), to the salt and pepper squid (£9). I really couldn’t get enough of the tasty portions – which are perfect for sharing. My favourite dish, however, was Nami’s take on the traditional fish and chips. Called the Sakana Chips (£9), the dish featured a tiny piece of cod served with dashi fries and citrus-based sauce ponzu. Again, don’t be surprised if you find yourself ordering seconds!
Of course, there’s also plenty on the menu for vegetarians and vegans. My personal recommendations would be the grilled Shishito peppers (£8) and the asparagus tartare with fried capers (£12). And the fancy cocktail menu caters for everyone too.
At first I was a bit dubious about dipping sushi in a cocktail, but it works. The Mango with Passion (£12) is served in a traditional martini glass and consists of Cîroc vodka, lemon juice, rosemary syrup, mango and passion. If you’re a fan of fruity concoctions, this is the drink for you. Served with a single piece of sushi, you’re advised to dunk it and enjoy.
If you prefer something stronger, the Oni Negroni (£12) is a must. A Japanese twist on the classic, this Negroni contains Tanqueray dry gin, Hokusetsu sake, Antica Formula Vermouth and Aperol. Beetroot lovers should definitely try the Beetroot Connection (£12), a complex and sweet mixture of dark Takamake rum, homemade beetroot liquor, antica formula and walnut bitter.
The Nami cocktail menu also offers variations of classic cocktails such as the Bloody Mary, mojitos and the espresso martini. While the food may be on the slightly pricier side, it’s worth every penny, and all drinks are priced between £8 and £12.
Overall, I really enjoyed my evening at Nami. Laidback and relaxed with a live DJ yet a chilled atmosphere, paired with attentive staff and delicious food, and drink made for an unforgettable experience in the heart of Shoreditch.
Nami at Nobu Hotel Shoreditch can be found at 10-50 Willow Street, London, EC2A 4BH.