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Conceived in a far-off time before sushi chains & supermarket California rolls, Nambu-tei uses all the classic indicators – Japanese lanterns, teapots, posters – to let the world know what lies
within. Tucked inside an old-fashioned arcade opposite Baker Street Tube, the ground floor (there are matted tatami rooms downstairs) is dominated by a baize-green carpet & sushi counter –
although it also functions as a mini-community centre with notices & leaflets galore. A comprehensive selection of raw fish in various forms includes some reasonably priced platters, while
lunchtime provides a great excuse for katsu & bento boxes. Noodles, tempura, teriyaki & topped rice bowls flesh out the repertoire, & everything is served with grace by a friendly team.
Keen prices allow room for experimentation – & that extends to the saké selection.
020 7486 5026
Baker Street Tube Station 31m
Marylebone Station 233m
The Sherlock Holmes Museum 142m
A.B.C. Cinema Marylebone Road 155m
Mon-Fri 12N-2.30pm Mon-Sat 6-10.15pm
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 3
Marylebone has its fair share of excellent Japanese places and, whilst maybe not as flashy or atmospheric as some of its rivals, Nambu-tei delivers on the food, the service and the value like very few other Japanese restaurants anywhere.
Like a real sushi counter in Tokyo, the restaurant itself is reached down a side alley, this one running off the unfashionable stretch of Baker Street, north of the Marylebone Road (where, if you believe the queues, Sherlock Holmes had his lodgings at 221B. An address located, in an even more odd numbering system than is generally employed in London, between 234 and 235 Baker Street). To complete the authentic oriental feel, it is behind a Chinese medical centre. It is as unprepossessing as it is possible to get in London.
The restaurant is a decent size, with a sushi counter in one room and tables in another. As there was a group of four of us, we opted for a table. We were swiftly seated, menus were proffered and beers poured. The menu is long and takes in all the classic Japanese takes on the likes of sushi, sashimi and tempura, but also noodles, shabu-shabu and all manner of hot foods that most “sushi” restaurants in Japan wouldn’t cover, leaving it to specialist places.
We started with some very pleasant gyoza, wandered through some deep fried oysters, some tempura, sushi, some wine, some more of most of what we’d already eaten, and yet still hadn’t had our pockets sucked dry. An unusual experience when dining at a restaurant in London, especially a Japanese one.
No one dish really stood out above the others, but they were each sufficiently good to ensure that I’ll be back. In fact it isn’t what you’d call a stand out place; not a place that the Michelin stars, or even Fay Maschler, would likely grace, but it is all the better for it. It is friendly, it is cheap(ish) and the food is pretty damn fine.
Food + drink: 4
if you looking for a really Japanese diner experience then the atmosphere is fantastic. if you are not then it's tired and borderline depressing.
The food however is great and reasonably priced.
The staff are really friendly and mainly Japanese. The teapot soup which comes with most set dinners is lovely.
If you like “real” Japanese food and not looking for a romantic or high powered setting then this is my favorite in London.
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