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3 Piccadilly Place
A closely guarded local secret, the quality of Yoshino’s sushi belies it’s user-friendly, bargain-basement prices. Downstairs is a ten-seater raw fish counter (arrive early to bag a berth), with
freshly created sushi packs piled up for takeaway, while the utilitarian blend of bare white walls & mustard-yellow plastic furniture in the upstairs dining room helps to keep prices low. Tuna
sashimi is a speciality, the kitchen shows its frying skills with light, greaseless jumbo prawn tempura, & the sushi line-up is topped by a £19.80 assortment covering tuna, albacore, salmon,
teriyaki eel, salmon roe, squid, king prawn & a negi toro roll. Service is smiley & swift, particularly at lunchtimes when three-course mini-banquets of fish roe on noodles, tempura salmon
or tofu & spinach salad start at £9.80.
3 Piccadilly Place
020 7287 6622
Piccadilly Circus Tube Station 342m
Green Park Tube Station 424m
Fortnum & Mason 38m
Jermyn Street 88m
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 1
The Square Meal review is based on the old Yoshino, one that I used to love.
Now the menu has changed (for the worse), the service has declined, the food is half as good as it used to be and the prices have gotten steeper!
- Instead of sashimi & roll sets, their chicken bento box or teriyaki salmon bento box, they have “wagyu beef teppanyaki” sets. I wonder if they think they can charge exorbitant prices just because of the name wagyu. Anyway, after ordering a set, the waitress didn't ask how we would like it done which started ringing alarm bells. Then when the steak came, it was drenched in pepper, so overpowering it was inedible.
- The maki selection had no salmon, no cucumber, no egg, no kampyo, but instead they had “sun-dried vegetable tempura roll”, “fresh tomato roll tempura” and “traditional maki roll”. The sun-dried vegetable roll was mushy ratatouille in maki-form but was terribly bland. The fresh tomato tempura roll was supposed to be crispy on the outside, but came soggy and oily. Also, it says three pieces but they brought two! And the ‘traditional maki roll’ had egg, tomato, spinach and a fourth mystery item – not exactly traditional…
Looking at the menu, I can see they want to increase their profit margin by including wagyu beef and switching to vegetarian options at the same price as fish rolls and giving them fancy names. That might work if they cooked it properly, but they didn't. It makes me think the chefs on the day were not up to the job.
Yoshino, please please please change your menus, go back to doing what you did so well before. If you want inspiration, go to Eat Tokyo. Their selection is huge but still tasty!
Food + drink: 4
Sometimes you stumble upon a good restaurant quite by chance, other times by recommendation or occasionally through just old fashioned searching. To find Yoshino in this way, would be quite an achievement. Perhaps if you had been out for a night on the tiles in Piccadilly and found yourself lost and just at the right time happen to peer upwards you may notice the discreet sign above your head, but otherwise no chance. To ask me for directions and receive some kind of coherent response would be like asking me to explain the string theory of physics while standing on one leg, after downing a bottle of super strength Sake . Basically it’s near Piccadilly Circus, halfway down a tiny side street which contains no other businesses, off Vine Street, which is off Swallow street and near the rear service entrance of Le Meriden hotel, Piccadilly. There how clear was that.
The Yoshino web site appears to be under construction in part, but it does state “Healthy, Beautiful, Original Japanese Cuisine” and I agree completely with those five words. You do not need to be an expert fishmonger from Billingsgate to notice the quality and freshness of the food served here, which was absolutely first class and presented in a modern and creative way with the elegance and grace of a Swan Lake production. Service was exemplary by the beautiful and by coincidence, healthy looking staff. It's a slightly odd restaurant in terms of internal lay out with some plain looking seating outside, a few tables and chairs on the ground floor next to an ad hoc take way sushi counter and seating upstairs for maybe 30 people. We sat upstairs in a pleasant but basic setting, but the real star here is the food and I would highly recommend this if you are a sole diner or with friends. In fact, I felt with the quality and presentation of the food, this place could choose to be all swanky and swish and double its prices, but thankfully they have not chosen that route and my guess is the Japanese like their restaurants to be homely rather than resemble a DHS showroom.
The menu which is written on a paper place mat is in both Japanese and English ( a good sign) does seem to leap about a bit in terms of pricing, but there are some good set menus which start at just £10 and rise to a heady £60.00. The prawn tempura I had was wonderfully crisp and came in a generous sized portion. My miso soup had a large prawn's head floating on the top ( I guess from my prawn tempura) which added some real depth of flavour and the Sashimi salmon salad was presented in sort of woodland fairly setting kind of way. Desserts are very limited, but with an unusual green tea ice cream choice and even a tiramisu?
Go if you can find it, but keep it to yourself for a while.
Food + drink: 5
I stumbled upon this place at lunchtime today and was blown away by the quality of the food at such amazing prices, especially for this part of London. The atmosphere/decor is a bit cold but if it's good sushi you're after you won't be disappointed. The tuna sashimi and sushi rolls were out of this world and the miso soup is the best I've ever had. I will be returning in the very near future.
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