Elldrew adopted this Japanese restaurant as our local after the Hi-Sushi in Hampstead changed it’s menu and went a bit wacky…yes, even we frown at ourselves for sometimes eating the same food every time we go to a local favourite. But, in all fairness, we do tend to try most dishes on a menu then work out which dishes we liked the best, ordering a selection of these each visit, depending on our mood. Elldrew are more into sampling a variety of dishes vs one main meal so Spanish Tapas, Japanese, etc are the restaurants we will frequent most.
We love Ikura. The food is great and they have all our favourite dishes. Simple, no fuss classic dishes at a sensible price…even the house wine is palatable. The owner (we think she is actually Malaysian) is a lovely lady who always greets us with a big smile and asks how we are…I guess we tend to dine here at least once a month so she knows our faces. The only downside about Ikura is that there are hardly ever any other customers dining, which doesn’t help when trying to create a nice restaurant vibe (we have to suspect that their home delivery service keeps the business afloat; our monthly visits certainly don’t). We also have a sneaking suspicion that the rather sterile and un-Japanese decor has something to do with it. We would love to get in there and give it a make-over, add some bamboo fencing panels to the walls and maybe get some bench seats to make it more authentic looking. Every time we pop in Drew tells himself he is going to suggest it to the owner, but alas food and wine arrives and it’s again forgotten. But the positive to this restaruant when it’s quiet is the staff, they don’t hover or make you feel rushed like other quiet restaurants we have been to. The food arrives as it’s cooked and Elldrew are happy to sit back and chat over our favourite dishes.
Any locals reading this post, please support it if you don’t already, you wont be disappointed. We heart you Ikura…actually we have a gyoza craving right now…see you sooner than you think!
9 Haverstock Hill
London NW3 4RL