What do we need to know about Jiji?
This is the newest restaurant from restaurateur Janina Wolkow, the woman behind celebrity hangout Sumosan. Billed as a Japanese/Middle Eastern fusion restaurant, it sees her working once more with Executive chef Bubker Belkhit, who helped found Sumosan, with the Head Chef here being Jeremy Borrow who used to head up the kitchens at The Palomar. So, yes, there's a pretty impressive body of talent involved.
Where is it?
You'll find it in the new Islington Square development in the old Post Office on Upper Street. It looks out onto the courtyard at Esther Anne Place and has a rather lovely and capacious terrace that's perfect for alfresco dining.
Where should we meet friends for a drink first?
There is a small bar section inside the restaurant, but if you want to meet elsewhere, there's the Humble Grape wine bar on nearby Theberton Street, or the newly opened The Boutique Grocer, right next door.
If you do meet here, you should definitely try the cocktails which were proving popular on the night we were in.
Where's a good place to sit?
The terrace is popular on a warm night, but there's also a nice high top table inside that's good for groups. The booths along the left hand side of the room are also good for larger parties or you could always perch at the counter and watch the sushi chefs at work.
What kind of food is it?
As the earlier description of Japanese/Middle Eastern fusion suggests - it's a mix of sushi, sashimi and the kind of dishes you'd expect to find in somewhere like the Palomar. It's an unusual combo, for sure, but we reckon it works. The menu's split into sushi, main acts and after-party (desserts).
Here's a taster:
What about vegetarians?
There's plenty for them here too, including a roasted cauliflower dish with tofu cream and poached egg in panko parmesan crumb with fresh corn truffle polenta and Shitake mushroom ragout.
Room for dessert?
There are just two options, so you might as well go for both... there are tahini blondies and this:
What about drink?
While starting at £28, the wine list stays mainly in the £40-£50 range, covering Europe with a few New World additions. If you're after something a little different, the White Tulip wine from Galilee (£44) is kosher as well as being light and refreshing.
Jiji should do very nicely in Islington. There's not much in the way of decent sushi in the area (barring Hot Stone) and the sheer glamour of the dining room here is going to prove alluring for locals looking for a fun night out.
More about Jiji
Where is it? 6G Esther Anne Place, London N1 1WL
How to book: Book online
Hot Dinners dined as guests of Jiji. Prices are correct at time of publication.
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