14-16 Bruton Place
Mayfair, London
Tel: 020 7499 8881 or check availability and book online
Oxford Circus 0.3 miles

London's first Kyoto restaurant, Umu serves innovative Japanese cuisine in a refined environment. The portions are small but perfectly formed and the attention to detail, fresh ingredients and an extensive wine list don't come cheap.

© Umu © Umu © Umu « 1 of 3 photos »

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Jan Moir's review of Umu (The Telegraph)
Joe Joseph's review of Umu (The Times)

Michelin Star Restaurants in London

Umu reviews

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Left the place and went to McDonald's afterwards. Needed to fill my stomach although I'd spent £242 for 2 menus of 8 courses. The portions were a pure joke. Not that I would have wanted more, since the taste of all the dishes was weird and somehow tasted like wood. At least when you go to Nobu you get good portions and great flavours. Rip-off.

Useful review?
 by damiansasha, 16 Nov 2011
I've dined in many Japanese restaurants and have to say Umu was a disappointment when compared with others in London. Roka and Zuma are 100% better than this place.

The service staff were friendly but they did not accommodate a request to replace the foie gras from the tasting menu - which was met with a harsh "NO" from the chef! I mean come on, I'm going to spend £250+ at your restaurant and you can't replace the foie gras with a side of sushi... what a joke.

I seriously don't know how these guys got their Michelin star. The sushi was great but all other dishes were bland and lacked flavour.

Go to Nobu, Roka or Zuma instead. Don't waste your money here.

Useful review?
 by vnagappa, 29 Sep 2010
Well, if you want to eat average Japanese food at silly prices then this is the place for you... But I thought it was rubbish and would never go back.

Useful review? 1
 by g30, 20 Mar 2010
Probably the biggest rip-off in the whole UK. Definitely not the type of food expected for such high prices. We ordered an Omakase Modern for £300 and all we got were tiny bits of whatever... I thought it was a joke, but no. Ripping customers off just has no limits!

Useful review?
 by NaughtyBoyGentle, 12 Oct 2009
Umu is a great venue, feels very exclusive and hidden away. The staff are very attentive and the food was interesting as well as very tasty. We tried some great Sake too. It's a great place to bring someone for a special and interesting evening out.

There were a few negatives from our visit though. We ordered the signature tasting menu but when the table next to us came to order the same, they were told it had sold out. Not great since that is probably the reason why most people book in the first place and it was only 9pm. Also as we progressed through the tasting menu ourselves we got a definite impression that they were short of some dishes as some of the promised dishes didn't turn up and others came at the wrong time. Maybe they were just having an off night, either way, a Michelin starred restaurant with these prices should be better prepared.

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 by RobRoberts, 10 Jun 2008
The restaurant was recommended to me by Japanese friends. Having had many disappointing meals at Nobu, Roka et al, I had almost given up on finding good (and consistently good) Japanese food in London. Umu's menu is excellent, and despite my being a sushi purist, the modern sushi is possibly better than the traditional selection. Our waiter was attentive yet discreet and he arranged for complimentary dessert when he heard that one of our party had just celebrated her birthday. Expensive, but worth every penny.

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 by heavenlostanangel, 08 May 2008
A bit disappointing. We felt that a lot of the dishes were trying to be something modern and it somehow lost the authenticity and simplicity of Japanese food. You can get contemporary fusion right, but this was not it for us. Beautiful interiors though.

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 by carson (7 reviews), 13 Apr 2008
The food was great, couldn't be better - rating: five stars. But the service was horrible - rating: one star!!

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 by Ulla Linnet, 22 Mar 2008
Speechless! In the scheme of things, the main course was mediocre compared to the sushi and sashimi. In my opinion, what makes the Japanese cuisine stand out from any other is its lightness and at the same time its highly sophisticated taste. This is achieved at superlative level by the two chefs at the sushi and sashimi bar. I agree with other reviewers, the atmosphere is very sophisticated, but it is not stiff in any way. A good mix of people.

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 by pembas, 23 Jan 2008
In my opinion, this is one of the best Japanese restaurants in London. The food is that good that even if the waiters were rude, which they weren't, it wouldn't matter. It's not cheap, but if you want the best you have to pay for it.

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 by AManWhoKnows (2 reviews), 02 Feb 2007
I went to Umu for my anniversary and had a fantastic evening. The food was amazing and service very discreet. Ichiro Kubota is running some cookery classes and I have straightaway booked myself in. I can't wait.

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 by Noah Claiz, 26 Jun 2006
Vastly overpriced for below average food. Very nice decor can't hide the fact that their food is not a patch on Zuma or Nobu.

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 by Edzard, 24 Apr 2006
This restaurant had been recommended to me, and having seen it on Urban Path's 100 Nicest I was really looking forward to our meal. Unfortunately my partner and I were extremely disappointed.

The food was less than average, the service was incessant (is there a record for how many times your almost full water glass can be topped up in one sitting??), and overall it was hugely overpriced. I wanted to try one of my favourite Japanese dishes, the Wagu Beef, and at £45 I was sure it would be a winner. How wrong I was... the portion was tiny, and what was on the plate was trimmed with sinewy fat.

However, the wine we had was great and I loved the 'Star Trek' front door. Not enough to warrant going back there though. If you are reading this and thinking of a Japanese treat, I would head straight to Roka... that place is rocking.

Useful review?
 by Tidy (7 reviews), 17 Feb 2006
I must say that when I first heard of Umu I was really excited by the way it sounded. On entering I was delighted with the exceptional decor and staff. However, after this it was all down hill. The service was too pushy and intrusive for my liking, and the food was seriously overpriced. Overall, I was extremely disappointed.

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 by Anonymous, 22 Dec 2005
Fantastic food and great atmosphere. A real treat, but expensive.

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 by Anonymous, 24 Nov 2005
Best of the best.

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 by Anonymous, 29 Sep 2005
Went early on a Saturday night, and it was really empty so the service was a little bit over attentive. We kept feeling as though our every move was being scrutinized. The food was fabulous, some of the best sashimi I have ever had. It was paired with saki for us by the sommelier. Very expensive, but worth it if you are into trendy decor, and great food.

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 by Lost in London, 11 Aug 2005
Best Japanese restaurant in town.

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 by Anonymous, 17 Jul 2005
Super. Super. Super. Sure it is expensive but it is worth ever cent. I have been here twice. Once we were two. Lately we were eight. Eric the manager has become a friend. Love it. Sushi spectacular, the design spectacular. I am going to go every time I go to London

Useful review?
 by ariadna (3 reviews), 27 Jun 2005
Orgasmic tuna belly, unreal sushi.. Great brown tea ice cream and cake - simply superb

Useful review?
 by Anonymous, 20 May 2005

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