Review of 'Sticks N Sushi'

Ever since this Danish sushi chain came to the UK in 2012 I have heard great things so I have been anxious to visit. The Covent Garden branch opened in 2013 and it was only just recently I finally had a chance to visit. Yes, it is expensive, but oh so good!

You would be forgiven for walking right by the narrow store-front of Sticks N Sushi on Henrietta Street but it is worth watching out for. The long, slender, dark modern interior is noisy and seems on first glance to be quite cold and clinical but do not let that deceive you - The staff are warm and welcoming even accommodating us despite not having a reservation (tip: make a reservation as it is always busy) albeit seated at a rather high bar which made us all feel like we were kids again trying to eat at a comfortable height.

The menus are a work of art - Beautifully laid out and worth spending some time over before deciding on what you want. This being our first visit we did not really know what to order so decided on something from the “Set Menus” (“If You Can't Decide We Can”) - The “Upgrade” platter for sharing which consisted of, wait for it: “NIGIRI: 2 salmon, 2 tuna, 2 shrimps, URAMAKI / INSIDE-OUT ROLLS: 8 pink Alaska, 8 crispy ebi, CARPACCIO: 6 slices of salmon with a lime marinade, RICE PAPER: 6 slices duck with goma dressing, YAKITORI / STICKS: 2 tsukune chicken meatballs, 2 tuna with chili dip, 2 lamb chops, YASAI STICKS with seeds & miso dip, Soy, wasabi & ginger” (£65).

After some prompting from our server, we started with “spicy miso soup” (£4.50) which was more seafood than soup with massive pieces of salmon throughout in a lovely, light miso soup. If anything, I did not find it at all spicy but it was still delicious.

The picture in the menu for our “Upgrade” dish did not make it look all that big but when it arrived the three of us knew it was more than enough. The sushi part of the dish arrived first and it was presented in a deep round wooden bowl which when placed in the middle of a table would be ideal for sharing but as we were lined up at the bar - not so much. It was beautiful to look at with a lot of care and attention given to presentation but it was flavour where the dish stood out. Our hands-down favourite was the salmon carpaccio - Thinly sliced raw salmon with an amazing marinade - But everything here was very tasty indeed including the duck sushi with matching dipping sauce (making me think of Peking duck). I linked the “crispy ebi uramaki” (deep fried prawns) which managed to be crispy even having sat in the bowl for quite a few minutes. The “yasai” (vegetable) sticks were just sliced up vegetables (carrot, Chinese broccoli, red cabbage leaves and tarot) with a rather nice dipping sauce - A lovely palate cleanser.

After we managed to finish the sushi the yakitori side of the dish showed up - Chicken meatballs (ok, but not great - very strong, tasty dipping sauce overwhelming what little flavour there was), tuna (quite tasty with a great sauce that, in this case, did NOT overwhelm) and lamp chops (absolutely delicious - the grill flavour nicely complementing the lamb).

With all that delicious food we also had some nice drinks to go with it - I had the “Genmaicha” (sort of a wheat tea) (£4) which was delicate and delicious. One of my other companions had the standard “matcha” (traditional green tea) (£4) which was, as expected, like consuming liquid grass.

Throughout our meal the staff were very helpful and attentive, not hurrying us along at all and being quite patient as we struggled to read the dark menu with the little light available at the bar. A 12.5 % (discretionary) tip was added automatically to the bill. At £99.33 for the three of us it was actually not that expensive (a) for London and (b) for top-notch sushi.

Funky, fun, delicious and not as expensive as you might think. We will be back to sample more delights from the menu…

Rating: “Nearly perfect, but not quite”

Review Date: 2016-03-17

Cuisine: Japanese

Address: 11 Henrietta St, London WC2E 8PY

Public Transport: TUBE Covent Garden

Location: London (England) - Covent Garden



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Telephone: +44 (0) 20 3141 8810