This Japanese restaurant at the five-star Prince Akatoki Hotel in Marble Arch is really seductive. As you enter Tokii, it is a banquet of the senses: You see sushi being prepared at a counter, hear the sound of beef cooking on hot stones and smell an intoxicating house scent of wood, frankincense, bergamot, patchouli and juniper. We will get to the taste and touch later.
We start with a cocktail at The Malt Lounge where a world of whiskies awaits. The lounge is intimate and sets the tone well for dinner. Our table overlooks a cute London mews and it feels cosy. As with many other London Japanese restaurants, Tokii does not focus just on one style of Japanese food and here you will find sushi, sashimi, tempura and hot dishes including their hot stone wagyu.
The sake list is great value and there are a few options by the carafe to go with our sushi – an assortment of spicy tuna maki and colourful fresh nigiri. The favourite – a tuni o-toro. The cold dishes and cold section of the menu were particularly impressive with sushi experts preparing everything closeby. Not every Japanese restaurant has its own master of sushi but it does make a big difference especially if you are a sushi regular.
We couldn’t resist the hot stone. There is something so primal about cooking meat on a stone that made me feel like a real man, for a minute. Until I touched (see we didn’t forget the final sense) the hot stone and soothed my hand on my cold sake.
There is a choice of wagyu beef to cook including Japanese wagyu beef (grade A4) or Westholme wagyu beef (grade 4-5) which comes with grilled vegetables, spicy ponzu sauce and some Japanese mustard mayo. The steak was super tender and cooked to my liking which is somewhere between medium and rare but not quite medium rare. Truffle fries on the side are the antithesis of wagyu but nevertheless we loved them.
As we finish our mains, Tokii is becoming busy with couples on dates, hotel guests and small groups too. Our waiter insists we try the chocolate fondant. She was right. The fondant was everything a fondant should be and came with chocolate ice cream too.
We wonder back to the Malt Lounge for another showstopper before my sixth sense told me it was time to meander back home.
To discover more, visit: tokii.co.uk
All imagery courtesy of Tokii.
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