Mr S isn’t someone who gets excited about his birthday, but that’s ok cos I get excited enough for both of us! I love birthdays, and mine can stretch out for weeks and weeks though Mr S is happy for his to be over after the actual day. We loved celebrating last year at City Social and this year I decided to book us into one of longstanding favourites: Zuma.
The restaurant was really busy when we arrived and we headed to the bar for a few drinks first…
The birthday boy started the night with a rubabu, rhubarb infused sake with Cape North vodka and passionfruit. Zuma actually serve 40 different sakes – pretty impressive!
I can’t really handle sake so I started with a glass of champagne. I was excited to be wearing a new dress for the occasion, I love the scalloped edging around the neckline and it was the perfect LBD for such a glamorous restaurant.
As you can see, the restaurant was heaving with a buzzy open kitchen, cool rough granite walls, light wood and lots of sparkly glass. Zuma has been open for 12 years but it hasn’t lost any of its polish. The interior is as chic and shiny as ever and people still flock to the Knightsbridge restaurant to sample the menu of delicious Japanese food. A couple of year ago I spotted Gary Barlow at the bar, but there were no such exciting celebrity sightings tonight!
We nibbled on some edamame beans while we read the menu, and I quickly ordered up a bottle of champers to toast Mr S’s special day.
I ordered a Billecart-Salmon Extra Brut to celebrate. It’s a zero dosage champagne which means no extra sugar has been added meaning it has a beautifully dry flavour that pairs well with the sushi and has the added benefit of being fewer calories!
There’s an option of going for a tasting menu at Zuma but as we’ve been a few times before we have a few favourites that we stick to. Starting with sliced seared tuna with chilli daikon and ponzu sauce. I can’t even begin to describe the wonderful flavours and textures of the sashimi, everything at Zuma is just of the highest quality. If you didn’t know, Zuma is actually the sister restaurant of one of the my other favourites, Roka, which now has four branches in London. There’s only one Zuma in London, but the restaurant has gone international with branches across the world including Miami, Hong Kong and Istanbul.
Our next cold dish was one that we always order at Japanese restaurants sliced yellow tail with green chilli relish, ponzu and pickled garlic.
And perfectly prepared jewels of seared beef with soy, ginger, lime and coriander.
Our sushi choices were spicy tuna with homemade chilli miso and yuzu tobiko.
And salmon, avocado with some delicious spicy wasabi.
Back to the birthday quickly, now as Mr S is a man who has everything (I mean look at the amazing lady he married!) it’s always quite hard to buy for him. Now would you believe we’re still in the process of finalising our wedding album after all this time and we have no framed photos of the wedding around our flat. I decided to rectify this and I bought some beautiful silver frames so we can keep memories of our wedding within our gaze all the time. I also bought him a voucher for us to go to the new hotel by Soho House, Soho Farmhouse in Oxford, as I always prefer gift experiences rather than actual presents. It means I get to enjoy them too 😉
Our final cold selection was mixed sashimi, presented beautifully on crushed ice. As much as I love sushi rolls I often prefer sashimi for the simplicity and clean flavours.
Simple asparagus is even amazing at Zuma and is served with wafu sauce and sesame.
As much as I love black cod, I think chilean seabass is great alternative (it’s also a little less expensive) and Zuma’s is served with green chilli and ginger dressing. The flesh of the fish flaked so beautifully with our chopsticks and I loved the sweet yet zesty flavour of the dish.
Spiced lamb is one of Mr Silver’s favourite dishes at Zuma and these chops were both his!
Our final savoury dish was jumbo tiger prawn with black pepper, a generous portion of delicious meaty hunks of seafood with a tasty spice running through.
Now you may have noticed that we were attempting to be pretty well-behaved with our food choices (low-calorie champagne, no yummy tempura and fairly few carbs) that’s because we’re going to St Lucia in a couple of weeks and I’ve been working hard on getting into shape. However, we still wanted to end on a sweet note and ordered this beautiful exotic fruit platter and a scoop of ice cream to share.
Eating those gorgeous fruits took me back to our recent blissful trip to Bali….
Zuma is a place I’ve visited several over the years and certainly somewhere that I’ll always return to. The food is incredible and you can expect a buzzing atmosphere and great service – the perfect place for a special birthday date.
5 Raphael Street
020 7584 1010