I love Sushi! London has witnessed a sushi “explosion” of late and you’ll find a small or high end sushi bar/restaurant pretty much every where in London.
I’d been to Heron Tower quite a few times but didn’t get a chance to visit Sushi Samba primarily because I couldn’t be bothered to book! The more high-end or full of hype a place is- the harder it is to get a booking #firstworldproblems. And so I made a booking for a Sunday a MONTH AND A HALF IN ADVANCE.
Fast forward to the day, my friend (who’s a vegetarian) and I (a hardcore carnivore!) made our way to the venue. Blitzed to the 38th floor and we were greeted by their lovely staff. The decor of the place is very modern, high ceilings, lots of space around the bar area (you can even eat there) and most importantly, lots of light! If you want to enjoy great views of east London, then this is one of the top places to be.
The staff are really friendly and although I wasn’t sure if there will be any crowd on a Sunday evening- it was packed! Felt like the weekend had just begun. So after ordering our drinks we immersed ourselves in the menu (I was starving!! no surprise there…)
I wanted to make sure there was a balance between vegetarian and meat dishes and both of us got to enjoy the meal. In situations like these, it’s always best to get the waiter’s opinion on what’s really good/popular. At least, I always like to go through the menu with someone who works there because who would know their food better than them!
So we ordered a couple of small plates like a salad, a tempura dish (had to!), mains for both of us and saved enough space for dessert! Gone are the days when you just ordered your main and stuck to it. Nowadays, it’s all about sharing and I love that concept. I’m glad restaurants have taken this idea of sharing on board. How boring is it when you can only order your own dish and not be able to try different bits on the menu or share with your friends?? I’m a pig and I want to try pretty much everything! :p
The dishes started arriving as they were getting ready so while we’d be sampling the eggplant, a plate of tempura would be placed next to it. But before I even mention the taste- the presentation is GORGEOUS! The food does not only taste bloody delicious, it’s a site for sore eyes. It’s so well presented that you’re almost sorry for ruining the chef’s handiwork.
The salad, although simple, had really good textures and it was fresh. It was a great way to start the meal. It was followed by the eggplant and market vegetable tempura. I loved the eggplant dish. It had a sticky glaze on top of it that made it so moorish and the sesame seeds gave it a nice crunch. One thing a Japanese restaurant has to do right no matter what, is tempura. And the market vegetable tempura was not a disappointment! It was crunchy from the outside yet the vegetables withheld their juiciness and taste.
Next ones to land on the table were the Black Cod and the vegetarian Samba rolls my friend ordered. First of all the Black Cod- OH MY GOD! That is all. One thing you HAVE to order is the Black Cod- juicy, melting in your mouth goodness. I could’ve had several plates of that. I’d never tried peruvian corn before and I loved it- giant version of a normal corn! I would’ve been happy calling it a day at that but the Wagyu Tataki finished my main meal off very nicely. I was in a daze of happiness and loving it! The amount of dishes we ordered was perfect as that left space for the dessert and you CANNOT leave this place without ordering dessert. It is not only gorgeous to look at, it tastes heavenly! It’s what your sweet tooth yearns for.
Anything chocolatey on the menu and I’m game so I went for With Love From Rio (love the names!) that was a concoction of valhrhona macaé ‘pure brazil’ dark chocolate ganache, coffee mousse, tonka bean ice cream and caramelised macadamia. Yum, yum and double yum! My friend ordered the passion fruit cake and looked more like a deconstructed version of it. It was made of green tea and white chocolate ganache, raspberry sorbet, coconut tuile, fresh raspberries and passion fruit. I had a bite and died.
SO! let’s get down the basics. This is by no means a budget meal so come prepared. But one thing is for sure- it will be worth every pound! From the ambience, the food, the service and the vibe- it’s definitely worth waiting the month and a half I waited for. Of course, if you’re not looking for a specific day, you may find a table. Between the two of us we paid around £65 which considering everything wasn’t bad at all.
You can book yourself a table here. (and you can check out the menu on the same link)
It’s super easy to get to- literally next to Liverpool Street Station.
As always, I try to be as regular in my reviews as I can but unfortunately my mouth and stomach work like flash! And the writer in me struggles to keep up… I shall leave you to gawk and drool over the food photos. Keep up to date through the Food Diaries London Twitter account (it’s updated almost daily!) to see what I’m eating and where. Till the next one! xx