Sitting in the elegant dining room at Sakagura, it’s easy to feel like you’ve found a portal from Mayfair which leads directly to Tokyo. The interior design evokes contemporary Japan without any Westernised kitsch, the service is meticulous to the point of marvel (a request for ice water translated to a bamboo bucket full of perfectly formed cubes, which our server individually plucked out with a companion set of bamboo tongs), and the sake list is miles long.
And then, of course, there’s the food. Sakagura’s USP is that it serves washoku fare, a UNESCO-honoured culinary tradition that emphasises rice, pickled vegetables, and other humble ingredients. Lest that sound too basic or ascetic, allow us to reassure you: Sakagura still practices fine dining with finesse. Wagyu steak has the consistency of melting butter, and an order of sashimi sees jewel-like slices of fish presented in a huge ceramic bowl, atop a mountain of ice and garnished with edible flowers. Minimalistic yet stylish, fresh but still decadent, Sakagura has fast become one of London’s must-visit Japanese addresses.