London lifestyle & travels with kids and babies
From conveyor belt sushi London to fine dining with kids, here’s a guide with our favourite sushi bars and restaurants, bottomless prosecco brunches, easy dinners and Michelin star inventive cuisine. It can’t be a coincidence that my cravings in the first pregnancy were mostly sushi. Ever since a toddler, R was so fond of sushi that even featured on BBC Fussy Eaters beating a grown up at rolls and miso soups!
1.Sticks N Sushi. Our favourite easy gourmet option, Danish Japanese chain with stylished Scandinavian vibes and carefully sourced ingredients.
We go regularly to the one in Covent Garden and Victoria with the kids, and closer to the office with friends and business partners in the Wharf. Recently opened there’s also one in Kings road, Chelsea – very handy esecially after National Army Museum outings. I personally love the tuna tartar, the ebi bites (shrimps tempura), hotate kataifi (hairy scallops with alioli), the salmon menu and the inventive rolls. The kids adore the salmon sushi boxes, colouring kits, chocolate fish and even small branded umbrellas for aficionados like us ! Sticks and sushi with kids is ultimately our most regular winner!
2.Yo sushi, our son’s favourite conveyor belt sushi London. The High Street Kensington now is closed sadly, so we go to the one in Harvey Nics plus on sunny days to the one behind Bond street, there’s a lovely outside chilled courtyard.
3.Roka for best brunches, including bottomless proseco. My favourite Roka with kids is the one in Aldwich, but then Roka Charlotte street and its cool Shochu Lounge used to be our regular hangout place before kids, whilst Roka Canary Wharf is my regular business lunch treat.
The brunch is a exceptional treat, from bubbles flowing to a procession of 10 amazing dishes with sashimis, edamame beans, rolls, dumplings, salmon teriyaki, tempura and and a gorgeous dessert platter.
4. Chotto Matte, Soho. One of my favourite evening sushi places that probaby doesnt spring to mind as kids friendly , but I promise it caters to perfection for the young clientele, from highchairs, to friendly personnel. My 4 years old fell in love with their downstairs restrooms, dragons on the walls and food. One of the very best of Nikkei (Japanese – Peruvian) cuisine, with bold eye-catching colours and mouth-watering dishes.
We spent 2 delightful hours in here, my son indulging on edamame beans, calamari, salmon sashimi and me on ceviche and salads.
5.Sake no Hana, Mayfair. An old favourite of ours in our old Mayfair hood, Sake no Hana is as fabulous as always. We dropped by for an easy lunch by the bar on a rainy Saturday – the place was buzzing. The food is as yum and fresh as we recalled it – amazing style and substance from Michelin-starred chef Hideki Hiwatashi; the personnel welcoming and cute with our kids. The boys loved the escalators and interiors designed by Kengo Kuma as well as seeing the sushi prepared just in front of them – will take them soon to sushi classes!
Theres a generous Umai sushi on Saturdays at £49 per head where there are 7 courses, a cocktail and half of bottle of Louis Roederer Champagne. We didn’t take the offer on this occasion, we need to go back with friends and without the toddler in tow to properly enjoy it.
6.Oka, Kingly Court – this is another vibrant place we loved in our child free past. OKA is on the 2nd floor, it’s quick, fresh and good value for money. For kids it’s also fun to observe the crowd on an early Saturday night from 2nd level and eventually run around (much more feasible on this floor than the ground one!).
7.Akira @ Japan House, Kensington – not sure if the food or restrooms mesmerised us more in here!
The lunch boxes were just amazing, impeccable aesthetics aside, the flavours are divine.
We are delighted to have Japan House in our hood, presenting the very best of Japanese art, design, gastronomy, innovation, and technology. The restrooms (you must have guessed!) come as one might expect straight with Japan high tech, so the 5 years old and I amused ourselves together testing different functions! Too cool, too hilarious and probably too much detail for this post!
8.Sushi Samba – Covent Garden opened late 2018 and it’s the perfect stop after a West end show (in our case the Peacock Theatre right after the Snowman) or family celebration lunch (January 1st 2019 !) . The location is brilliant, just above Covent Market, the decor is exhuberantly tropical and the food and cocktails superb.
The 5 years old and I indulged on repeated occasions in tempura green beans with black truffle aioli, I love the sharp freshness of the tuna ceviche with pomegrantes, maiz and wasabi peas and the seabass sashimi on the himalayan salt block is just divine.
9.Maze Grill – Gordon Ramsay needs little introduction. Maze Grill Park Walk also needs liitle introduction with our Chelsea friends – rare breed steaks and impeccable sushi in a casual chic setting with exposed bricks and filled with contemporary cool art.
We were invited recently for a bottomless brunch – exquisite options sushi and sahimi, versions of avocado done at perfection and a great prosecco (Fiol) flowing. We will be back with more friends in tow soon !