Open: Lunch; Mon–Fri 12.30pm–2:30pm, Sat and Sun 12.30pm–3pm, Dinner; Sun–Tue 6pm–10pm, Wed–Sat 6pm–10.30pm.
Sushinho is a sleek and sophisticated Brazilian-Japanese fusion restaurant which fits perfectly into the upmarket King’s Road. Its sleek dark wood interior blends with exposed brick, bamboo walls and low-key lighting to create a civilised, hush-hush atmosphere.
On my week night visit the upstairs restaurant was full of attractive, young Chelsea couples. Once we were seated my Japanese dining companion and I ordered two fantastic cocktails from the impressive and extensive drinks menu. Simon followed the other diners and opted for Siena Miller’s favourite low-calorie number; the Cucumber Sour (£9). It was as expected; cool and refreshing. I opted for the house cocktail; the Sushinho Sakeirinha (£9), sake muddled with pink grapefruit and passion fruit. The bitterness of the grapefruit balanced the sweet passion fruit very well.
Our attentive and knowledgeable waitress happily ordered for us and we started with the chef’s choice Sushi Platter (£20) which consists of 10 pieces of the day’s special sushi. Our favourite was the Spider Roll which married perfectly moist soft shell crab with lettuce, tobiko, chilli mayonnaise and a subtle hint of jalapeño. Ironically the only dud was the House Special, the Sushinho Roll which featured salmon, crab, cream cheese and soy sauce and was served warm due to its Brazilian influence – a little bland.
For entrees we were blown away by the Butterfish and Asparagus Skewers with ginger and a sake and miso dressing (£12). The fresh fish melted in the mouth and the subtly sweet dressing complimented the less powerful flavour of the fish perfectly. The Schichimi Baby Squid with lime (£7.50) was the best we had ever tasted, served in bite-size portions with a delicate crispy batter.
Unfortunately, the main courses from the Sushinho Specials section were a tough act to follow; a task they failed. If there was a winner on this course then it would have been my dining companion who received a good portion of steamed Hiramasa accompanied by butternut squash two ways, yuzu fennel, olives, pineapple and vanilla dressing (£20). The Hiramasa (kingfish) was fantastically moist and tender although its presentation was a little off putting, it arrived swimming in pureed butternut squash with small lumps of the vegetable joining it. The unusual fusion of pineapple and olives with butternut squash puree is not one we would willingly repeat again.
My main seemed distinctly ill-fitting with the rest of the menu and was frankly somewhat hard to swallow after the delightfully light complex flavours of the sushi. Pork loin, sweet potato and mozzarella gratin, hispi cabbage, crispy pancetta and tamarind jus (£16); the less said about this dish the better. The pork loin was dry, the pork belly was too fatty, the cabbage was boring and the mozzarella gratin was heavy and flavourless.
On the other hand the Cassava Chips with Shichimi Mayonnaise (£3.75), that accompanied our mains were a huge success, they had an unusually abrasive texture and a lovely sweetness to them.
I think the lesson learned here is… Stick to fish and chips and you will be blown away!
Dinner for two, with cocktails, around £100.