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“The waiting is over!” proclaims one reader: after protracted delays, MasterChef winner Tim Anderson has finally launched his homage to the nanban tradition of Euro-influenced Japanese cuisine, using ingredients from Brixton Market. A one-page menu offers crowd-pleasing curries and burgers alongside ramen and gyoza. Our salad of steamed cavolo nero with crunchy garlic chips drenched in ponzu butter was a revelation, and Anderson’s take on horumon-yaki (twice-cooked pig’s tripe in a spicy miso sauce with perky vegetables) is a masterpiece, but we’d also suggest deep-fried ‘electric eel’ and mentaiko pasta – an on-trend Italian/Japanese fusion riff involving spaghetti in chilli-cured cod-roe sauce, topped with a slow-cooked onsen egg. Service is helpful, and the thoughtful drinks list includes saké, shochu and small-batch craft beers. Our only gripe concerns the rather spartan first-floor dining room – try to bag the prime window seat on the cosier ground floor.
My name is Yee Gan and I’m a chef stalker. One of my favourite Masterchef winners in the last few years was Tim Anderson, whose soft spoken American accent belied an encyclopaedic, obsessive knowledge about Japanese food.The drawback about watching food programs on TV is that until they develop smell-o-vision for TV, we have to suffer the frustrating inability to enjoy the smells and flavours of the wonderful looking food.
More from The Boozy Bunch »
There’s no shortage of casual Japanese restaurants in London, but Nanban is different. Although headed up by 2011 MasterChef winner Tim Anderson (no, I don’t watch the show), Nanban doesn’t just depend on name recognition of its celebrity chef. Originally slated to open in Shoreditch years ago, Nanban is now on Brixton’s Coldharbour Lane and has thus adopted some West Indian influences into its menu which makes for Japanese food that’s quite unlike anything you’re likely to have had before.The exemplar of this hybrid approach has to be the curry goat tsukemen. This is a traditional form of ramen, but with the...
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