Izy Izakaya has a moody interior and a focus on the Japanese charcoal grill, the thoughtful menu is based around. It’s only a page long and although on first glance the food might seem a little misplaced – think burrata, brioche lobster rolls and a take on garlic bread called “umami bread” (made with black garlic and wild chives) – the modern Euro-Japanese fare deftly navigates disparate cuisines with an easy fluidity.
The eatery regularly changes the wood it uses in the grill, depending on what’s being cooked and what interests the chefs. Grape wood gives kingfish with smoked mandarin, or charred pineapple bouillabaisse, a sweetish-smoky flavour. There has also been roo cooked over chestnut wood.
Even the cocktails take inspiration and ingredients from the grill, such as the retro punch in a vintage bowl with smoked mandarin, semillon, cava and white rum.
There’s a good list of sakes as well as Japanese whiskies – their smoky undertones play neatly off the food menu. The wine list concentrates on quality and value, keeping the selection accessible. So you can have a bar snack and a few glasses a couple of times a week.