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Summer Omakase at Apothecary East: A Culinary Adventure in Shoreditch

We paid a visit to Apothecary East in Shoreditch, where Japanese dining meets East London vibes. Enjoy their new six-course Summer Omakase menu, crafted by chefs Luca Bernardini and Masashi Noguchi.

Nestled in the vibrant heart of Shoreditch, Apothecary East offers a unique Japanese dining experience that seamlessly blends Tokyo-inspired izakaya culture with a trendy East London vibe. We recently had the pleasure of sampling their new Summer Omakase menu, a delightful six-course tasting journey crafted by head chef Luca Bernardini and guest chef Masashi Noguchi, renowned for his work at Zuma and TOKii.

Apothecary East is located on Charlotte Street, just a short stroll from Shoreditch highstreet station. The restaurant’s interior is a fusion of contemporary and traditional elements, featuring exposed brickwork, handcrafted wood screens, and lush greenery. This stylish setting is perfect for both intimate dinners and casual gatherings, offering various seating options from cozy booths to plush sofas and bar stools​ (LuxUnattached)​​ (DesignMyNight)​.

The Aperitif

Our culinary adventure began with a choice of three refreshing aperitifs: a Roku gin & tonic, a matcha pisco sour, and a non-alcoholic hibiscus mar-tea-ni. I opted for the gin & tonic, which was a classic choice with a subtle hint of botanical freshness that complemented the beginning of our meal. My partner tried the matcha pisco sour, a fascinating blend that balanced the earthy notes of matcha with the tangy pisco, making it a vibrant and invigorating start to the evening.

The Courses

We started with the Chippusu renkon lotus root crisps, served with dried tomato and white miso. These crispy delights were the perfect light snack to get us excited for the courses to come. The combination of the delicate crunch of the lotus root and the umami-rich miso was unexpectedly pleasant, even for someone who usually prefers heartier snacks.

Chippusu renkon lotus root crisps

Next, we enjoyed the Sea Bass Maki, paired with shiso and umeboshi, which was a refreshing and light introduction to the seafood offerings. The fish was incredibly fresh, and the mix of shiso and umeboshi gave it an interesting twist.

Sea Bass Maki

And the dished kept coming. Next was the salmon tartare, served with ginger shallot and gyoza skin crisp. The combination of fresh salmon and the crispy gyoza skin was a textural masterpiece, bursting with flavour. Despite generally preferring cooked fish, I found the tartare to be an unexpectedly pleasant surprise.

Our next dish from the robata grill was the tsukune which is a dish made of ground chicken thigh with sesame oil teriyaki and grated daikon. For my partner who opted for the vegetarian alternative, the charred hispi cabbage with whipped tofu and togarashi chili offered a robust and smoky flavor profile.

The Gohan Salmon Chazuke, featuring seared salmon, sushi rice, and a savory barley miso sake broth, was a soulful dish that warmed us from the inside out. The vegetarian gohan, with oyster mushrooms and kinoko dashi, provided a satisfying umami-rich alternative that was deeply comforting.

Gohan Salmon Chazuke
Seared Wagyu Bavette

The meal culminated with the Seared Wagyu Bavette, a Chilean bavette paired with smoked aubergine and chestnut mushrooms. This dish was a great end to the tasting menu, with each bite offering a melt-in-the-mouth experience. 

Dessert was a refreshing and Sweet Mochi, with both yuzu lemon and mango passionfruit, which provided a perfect palate cleanser to end the meal.

Sweet Mochi

Throughout the night, we also sampled several of Apothecary East’s expertly crafted cocktails, each adding a unique twist to our dining experience:

  • Umeshu Hai: Toki Japanese whisky, umeshu plum wine, lemon juice, Peychaud’s bitters, and Franklin & Sons ginger ale. This was a light and refreshing take on a classic Japanese whisky highball. The blend of umeshu and whisky created a perfect harmony of sweetness and spice.
  • Zen Garden: Roku Gin, sakura green tea, shiso leaf, lime cordial. This cocktail was a refreshing, bold, and floral play on a gimlet. The infusion of sakura green tea and shiso leaf added a unique herbal note that was both invigorating and soothing.
  • Okinawa Daiquiri: Havana spiced rum, pineapple and mango puree, velvet falernum, orgeat, and lime juice. This daiquiri was citrus-forward and boozy, served straight-up. The tropical flavors of pineapple and mango were perfectly balanced with the spiced rum, making it a delightful accompaniment to our meal.

Apothecary East’s Summer Omakase menu is a testament to the chefs’ creativity and expertise, offering a diverse array of dishes that cater to both omnivores and vegetarians alike. At just £55 per person, it represents great value for a high-quality dining experience. The relaxed yet refined atmosphere of Apothecary East makes it an ideal spot for any occasion, from date nights to casual dinners with friends.

For more information and reservations, visit Apothecary East’s website.

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