HomeReviews - UKTamashii (Pan-Asian) – King’s Cross, London

Tamashii (Pan-Asian) – King’s Cross, London

HALAL STATUS Fully Halal food menu UPDATE (05-02-19): CURRENTLY NOT HALAL (temporary supply issues!) • Alcohol served

Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossHaving recently reviewed a number of Japanese restaurants, including the award-winning Issho-Ni and London’s first Japanese restaurant to present a fully Halal food menu, Mitsuryu, our exploration of the Far East continues.

Having opened in November after taking over from the old buffet restaurant Kitchin on Caledonia Street, Tamashii in King’s Cross has currently taken up residency as a pop-up that’s being trialled till March.

The exciting news is that its fully Halal food menu has been created by Chef Wei, a man with over 35 years of experience who’s plied his trade at places like Hakkasan and The Colony Club in Mayfair.

Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossThis 100-cover venue though is huge! And while there is a large alcohol bar located therein, this is situated at the front of the restaurant, with plenty of seating around the corner in an entirely separate area.

The menu itself has plenty of dishes of a Pan-Asian nature ranging from Ramen and Teppanyaki to Thai Green Curry and Pad Thai.

What’s more, there’s Halal duck, and plenty of it, including a ramen, which we don’t believe you can currently find anywhere else.

DRINKS

drinks beverages mojito Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Virgin Mojito, £5.00

A standard mojito that’s decent enough, with the mint just about coming through with far to much sugar added to a fizzy drink. We’ve had far worse.

But, here’s the thing, there’s a huge bar across the way, and while they have a separate section for making non-alcoholic drinks, why is their selection so limited, and why is this mojito barely average? Drink for thought!

SMALL PLATES & SIDES

Squid Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Shichimi Chilli Squid – Squid sprinkled with shichimi and served with coriander dipping sauce, £6.75

These golden Shichimi Chilli Squid were a touch on the chewy side and not as crispy as we were all expecting.

What we did enjoy was the manner in which the vinegary sauce helped counter the heat of the batter.

Chicken Wings Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Sticky Chilli Chicken Wings, £6.50

In spite of a crispy exterior, these Sticky Chilli Chicken Wings were neither sticky nor chilli. Truth be told, they were rather bland, chewy, fatty and a tad oily too.

Furthermore, there were at least two which were a little red nearer the bone. As for the sweet and sour sauce – standard!

HOUSE SPECIALS

Oh woe is us for expecting a Quarter Crispy Aromatic Duck to be flavourous and moist, but which instead turns out as though its been sitting around a while.

While this was certainly crispy, it was on the dry side, and lacked that deep fatty richness of a well executed duck. Consequently, the pancakes weren’t very memorable, which was a real pity.

Lobster Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Baked Lobster with Chilli and Garlic, £25.00

Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossAn interesting take on the baked lobster, with the crustacean broken up and tossed in a dry chilli mixture. Not the most attractive thing you’ll ever see, but let’s see nonetheless.

Alas, this came out lukewarm. To make matters worse, and despite being a fun dish to work through using the claw cracker and pick, parts of it were a touch on the chewy side, giving the impression that either this had been slightly overcooked, or cooked only to then be left to sit around rather than being served immediately.

The only redeeming factor for us was the chilli concoction at the bottom of the bowl which we were left to nibble on by the end.

TEPPANYAKI

Yaki Udon Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Yaki Udon – Udon noodles cooked in curry oil with chicken, prawns, mushrooms, beansprouts, leek, and peppers. Garnished with pickled ginger, sesame seeds and fried shallots, £10.90

On first impressions, we were expecting far more, both in terms of presentation (a blue plate! Really?) and quantity.

And if this Yaki Udon succeeded in achieving anything, it was in splitting the crowd. As such, while two Lions were left underwhelmed all round, the remaining member opined: “Impressive! Full of flavour,” while describing it as “refreshing after the average starters”!

CURRY

Katsu Curry Vegetarian Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Yasai Katsu Curry (v) – Vegetables coated in panko breadcrumbs, covered in a curry sauce and served with a side salad and white rice, £11.00

Katsu Curry vegetarian Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossOkay, so curries are, admittedly and quite understandably, difficult to present elegantly at the best of times. It does look like a replica of what you get from Wagamama.

In this case, two words came to mind: simple and homely, which aren’t exactly the words one looks for when popping out to a restaurant, let alone one in King’s Cross.

Be that as it may, this tasted better than it looked, though, again, in a homely type way. The patty, soft with a gentle sweet undertone to it, married well against the soothing heat of the mild curry. And that’s all she wrote.

HOT POT

Stir-Fried Lamb Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Stir-Fried Lamb – With ginger and spring onions, £14.50

stir-fry lamb Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossThis Stir-Fried Lamb was a ‘Hot Pot’, with a viscousy, onion-based broth, and whose flavours simply weren’t as distinct as we would have liked, despite the addition of chicken and spring onions.

For us, the dominant flavour was the onion, with a touch of heat running through it.

What’s more, not only did one Lion consider the texture of the poultry to be “almost chewy”, but another said he also detected an unpleasant odour to it.

RAMEN

Beef Steak Ramen Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Chilli Sirloin Steak Ramen, £12.50

beef ramen Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossIt’s not like we Muslims are spoiled for choice when it comes to Halal ramens in London.

But not even the sense of anticipation could serve as much of an excuse in favour of this Chilli Sirloin Steak Ramen, it was that bad!

Not only was it unappealingly presented, but also lacked any real depth of flavour.

The steak was overcooked and chewy, and appeared to have been sitting in the broth for a period. Worst of all, there was hardly any broth.

The only redeeming factor here was the cooking of the noodles. We’re hoping this was just a one off.

Duck Ramen Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Roast Duck Ramen, £12.50

Duck Ramen Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossRECOMMENDED

In complete contrast to the above, and in relation to the quality of the competition, this Roast Duck Ramen was far better.

While we would have again preferred more of the mellow-flavoured broth, the duck itself had that familiar richness to it so distinct of well cooked duck.

Not only was it saturated and juicy, but the noodles were just right.

And with plenty of nicely wilted pak chow, the red onions provided some sweetness along with some additional textural contrast. Wholesome!

DESSERTS

Desserts Mochi Ice Cream Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings Cross

Chocolate Ice Cream Mochi £5.50; Matcha Green Tea Ice Cream; Sesame Ice Cream Mochi; Vanilla Ice Cream Mochi – £3.50 each

tea Tamashii Halal Japanese restaurant Kings CrossIn relation to the Mochis – soft, pounded sticky rice dumplings moulded around ice cream – we were fortunate enough to try all the flavours available on the menu.

To be honest, these were certainly some of the betters ones we’ve had.

The exterior casing had a light, gelatinous texture to it, making it easy for a spoon to slide through to the ice cream centre, all of which were relatively smooth and well made. Our favourite had to be the Chocolate Ice Cream Mochi followed by the Sesame Ice Cream.

And don’t forget the tea at the end to wash things down!

THE ROAR
Tamashii
2 FTL's Roar
2.5 Pride's Roar (1 Roar)
Alcohol/ Pork?
  • YES/ NO
FSA HYGIENE RATING
Last Checked: 16/01/19
Facilities
  • CHILD SEATING
  • DISABLED ACCESS
Summary
With a dearth of Halal ramens available in London, you can imagine our excitement at trying out Tamashii's, especially after learning that of the two meat offerings, one was duck! And while this was pretty good, the rest of the menu hovered in between the decent and the satisfying.

Bearing in mind that this is a pop-up restaurant currently being trialled until March of this year, this place is worth exploring, if only for the duck ramen. Tamashii has potential, given that its menu has been created by Chef Wei, a man who boasts 35 years of experience. For the moment, there's room for improvement.

Menu Recommendation

Main - Duck Ramen

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Tamashii
8 Caledonia St, King’s Cross, London N1 9DZ.

T: +44 (0)20 7713 8777 | W: www.tamashiilondon.co.uk | E: info@tamashiilondon.co.uk

Opening Hours: Mon-Thur 12:00-22:30 | Fri-Sat 12:00-23:00 | Sun 12:00 – 22:00

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