if computers didn’t have a strong enough grip on our lives already, it appears that they want to control of our dining experience too. inamo places a computer at the core of its concept, making for a fun and unique night out. With the opening of this second, larger and even more impressive extension of the inamo brand, it certainly looks like the concept has been a hit with Londoners too.
Spanning over 8,000 sq ft with a total capacity of 300 across the restaurant, bar and sushi bar areas, inamo St James presents an entirely different interior design from the first inamo. The focus here is on distinctive natural elements such as back-lit semi-precious stone and a vertical Japanese garden with a water feature. The bar area is also larger and more lively, making it a great drinking destination in its own right.
As with the original restaurant, the interactive interface allows diners to entertain themselves with a host of functions, from placing their order and choosing their projected table cloth to watching the inamo chefs at work. If you can’t be bothered to make irrelevant chit-chat with you guest, you can even have a game of battleships! Food and drink is delivered by the inamo staff soon after your order, with the main danger being that you can get a little carried away with the ordering as it’s so much like a computer game!
With so much technology on site, it’s no surprise that the Pan-Asian menu focuses predominantly on Japanese cuisine. Dishes are split into small and large plates and diners can choose from a proper dinner or a tapas style of dining. Dishes include Kelp marinated sea bass; Beef buri bop, a traditional Japanese rice dish of rib eye steak served in a hot bowl with garlic soy & ginger sauce that diners cook to their own liking; a stunning Berkshire pork neck with confit of apple, crushed wasabi pea & spicy chocolate sauce; and Hot & sour pomfret. When it comes to dessert however, I would recommend saving the calories for some of their excellent cocktails, including a sake martini that is great with their food.
So they’ve got a great looking restaurant, a fun concept and an appealing menu, but is it actually any good? The best complement I could pay it is to say that if you were to strip away all of glitz and technology, underneath is still a very accomplished restaurant that I would be happy to dine in.
Cuisine type – Japanese/Pan-Asian
Dinner for 2 (ex. drinks) – £60
Beer – 3.50
Wine – £5
Cocktails – £7.50
Inamo St James
4-12 Lower Regent Street
London, SW1Y 4PE
Tel: 020 7484 0500