‘Nouvelle meets sushi’ at this polished Japanese dazzler overlooking Canada Square – a ‘devastatingly cool’ mix of clean lines, glowing filigree and acres of warm wood, with occasional samba beats adding a touch of soul. Head to the rocking bar for infused shochu drinks and killer cocktails or claim your spot at the mighty slab of grained wood that provides a ringside view of the culinary action. The red-hot robata grill is its beating heart, delivering ‘obscenely good’ caramelised pork belly with pear, zesty Korean-style lamb and black cod with miso, although the menu also yields ‘silken broths’, rice pots loaded with Japanese mushrooms, and picture-pretty crossover desserts such as pistachio cake with black-sesame ice cream. Roka’s slap-up buffet hullabaloo (‘with as much wine as you can drink’) attracts hordes of Chinese families and Docklands bargain-hunters at the weekend, while sleek greeters and slick service ensure that everyone enjoys this ‘umami party for the palate’.
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