Test Drives

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonChef Shaun Presland in the kitchen on sushi and sashimi duty at Pacific

So, what do we need to know about Pacific?

This is the latest restaurant residency to take over the space at 10 Heddon Street. In the kitchen is Aussie chef Shaun Presland, who's a pretty big deal down under, but has now moved to London to open up shop here. He's in this space till the end of February while he searches for a permanent site.

Where is it?

On Heddon Street, just off Regent Street.

So where's a good place to meet for drinks first?

There's always the bar here with a short but interesting cocktail list. We were here at lunch so cocktails weren't on our agenda but we're intrigued by the sound of the coffee-infused Pina Colada (£12). There are only a few seats up at the counter though, so if you need more room then head opposite to Kwant where ex-American Bar barman Erik Lorincz is apparently creating quite the scene.

What kind of food is it?

They bill it as "Japanese food with an informal, warm Australian twist." And this is the real deal if you love sushi. Shaun spent seven years in Japan learning his trade. The menu's split into small plates, sashimi, mains and pudding and there's a specials board to which focused mainly on nigiri when we were in.

Here's what we had:

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonChirashi salad (£15) served in an ice bucket, this layered salad of sashimi slices with lettuce and soba noodles and tempura crunch demands to be mixed up at the table with a bracing yuzu dressing.

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonKimchi brussel sprouts (£7) - if you love sprouts, this will be a welcome addition to the way you enjoy eating them with its spicy Korean-inspired vinaigrette and edamame beans. If you're a hater, this might just convert you.

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonMonkfish katsu sando (£12) - this may not compete with other London katsu sandos on presentation - it's lacks the geometric beauty of others we've had - but you can easily forget that when it tastes this delicious.

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonAssorted nigiri from the daily specials - Seared salmon with lemon and smoked salt, bluefin tuna and seabass wrapped in golden kombu.

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonSeabass sashimi (£13) with sesame, chive and verjuice with a white soy dressing - gorgeous sashimi and we appreciated the added textures.

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonWagyu steak (£25) - having been grilled on the robata this comes served on a mini grill, so you can finish the slices off to your personal taste. It's served with BBQ dressing, wasabi chimichurri and ponzu sauces for dipping.

Room for dessert?

There are just two options - a short selection of gelato, including white miso or the fondant. We went for the latter (£10) to share

Shaun Presland's Pacific restaurant review LondonThe fondant was a very good version with a miso caramel centre, served with Hackney Gelato ice cream.

What about the wine list?

The list is Australian focused with 15 whites and 15 reds showcasing what's interesting in Aussie winemaking right now. It's pretty punchy with a few bottles in the £30s before springing upwards. Or you could opt for sake instead - they serve four from Kozaemon and there's also a beer from Coalition Brewery specially created to work well with Japanese food.

Overall thoughts:

If you love great sushi, then you should make a beeline for Pacific. Shaun Presland's menu had loads of things we'd want to try on a return visit - the cheeseburger gyoza and Bondi rolls to name just two. This is just the ticket for a post-Christmas meal that's packed with flavour more than calories.

Hot Dinners dined as guests of Pacific. Prices correct at time of publication.

 

More about Pacific at 10 Heddon Street

Where is it? 10 Heddon St, Mayfair, London W1B 4BX

How to book: Book online here.

Find out more: on their website or follow them on Instagram @10heddonst

 

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