London: Wakaba Restaurant
Since 1987, Wakaba Restaurant has remained hidden behind a single curved acid-etched facade, a mysterious barrier between the restaurant and the busy street outside. Wakaba is a signature John Pawson design, minimalist to the max. For several years, the restaurant didn’t even have a sign– it has a plain white entrance, with a matching stark white interior, like an exclusive club. Everything is kept behind lacquered doors, and all the furniture is made of white oiled beechwood. Across the street from the Finchley Road tube station, the restaurant finally has a sign– so it isn’t as difficult to find. The restaurant is family run– and your fresh fish will no doubt be made by the founding father, Mr. Yoshihara, and you will no doubt be waited on by one of his daughter. It’s gaining its reputation as one of the finest traditional Japanese restaurants in London, every visit I’ve had has always been a delight. It’s quiet, and almost a bit secretive- my party spent an easy 3 hours there, until closing, and we were the only table there! The food is a treat, get the miso glazed black cod– you won’t be disappointed.
Wakaba is at 122a Finchley Road, London, NW3 5HT, Phone: 020 7586 7960