Endo takes a break from the Rotunda to shuffle his pack

Endo at the Rotunda, possibly London’s top-performing restaurant, is to close down for a four-month refurb in mid-March while chef patron Endo Kazutoshi masterminds two new openings.

The Yokohama-born third-generation sushi master opened his 11-seater flagship on top of the old BBC White City Television Centre five years ago. It has featured in the top 20 of the Harden’s 100 list of the UK’s best restaurants ever since, and this year is the highest-placed restaurant in London.

Meanwhile, in his role as chef patron of Misha Zelman’s Creative Restaurant Group, Endo will next month oversee the opening of Niju in Mayfair, serving home-style Japanese cuisine. It is taking over the premises of 20 Berkeley Street, a hyper-seasonal British restaurant which was only opened by the group last summer.

This will be followed in April by the opening of Kioku by Endo at the OWO – the Old War Office in Whitehall – which will occupy a sixth-floor perch with 360-degree views from a private dining room in a turret.

Kioku – meaning ‘memories’ – is said to combine Endo’s Japanese heritage with Mediterranean inspiration. Much larger than the Rotunda, it can accommodate 55 guests in the dining room, another 55 on an outdoor terrace and 8 each at a chef’s table overlooking the kitchen and in the private turret. In addition, there is a Kioku bar on OWO’s ground floor serving more than 100 sakes along with Japanese cocktails.

Endo also oversees Creative Restaurants’ sushi bar Sumi in Notting Hill and Humo in Mayfair, run by his former Rotunda chef Miller Prada.

The refurb of the Rotunda is being handled by architect Kengo Kuma, who was responsible for the original design, and will make it “even more immersive and personal“, in Endo’s words.

“I want to make the Rotunda more intimate, like you are coming into my home, a place where you can be relaxed and enjoy the food that comes from my family, heart and culture.”

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