Ichikawa is the authentic Japanese restaurant located in the Porta Romana area which boasts the surname of the master Haruo Ichikawa. In Milan, more than a sushi chef, he is an institution of Japanese gastronomy: in fact, thanks to him Iyo restaurant was awared with a Michelin star in 2014, the only ethnic restaurant in Italy to have received this recognition.
After leaving Claudio Liu's famous restaurant, Ichi (as the affectionates call him) took care of consulting (B Sushi in Milan and Il Magnolia of the Four Seasons in Florence), also signing the Ichi Station menu (famous for multi-colored sushi).
2019 was the turning point: Ichi san wanted to open his own restaurant, where to express your talent and creativity with passion and without limits. The three partners Giorgio Capelli, Stafano Legnani and Paolo Peri (owner of one of the most popular pizzerias in Barcelona, La Sedici) accompany him. The last two, by the way, deal with the room with enormous kindness. Here the customer is really put at the center of attention, you will be pampered and guided in your gustatory journey with unparalleled dedication.
After opening its doors with the only omakasè formula, and thanks to the anti Covid-19 provisions, today it is possible to taste the à la carte dishes. The attention paid to each course is nothing short of obsessive: Ichi san has prepared a precise menu in its proposals and authenticity. At the sushi counter she works together with the talented Satoko Kakutani, a concentrated and expert sushiwoman. So do not be dismayed when ordering because it is more than normal to have the desire to try practically everything.
The confirmation of the quintessence of the superiority of this cuisine comes with harumaki (Japanese spring roll, tasty and fragrant) but above all with sunomono, a true triumph of delicacy and technique: saba with shiso and ginger, pickled cucumber in vinegar with variation of shrimp (seared and raw red shrimp), mozuku seaweed base, boiled octopus with sake and mirin, fasolaro, shrimp, salmon wrapped in marinated daikon and ikura.
We then proceed with one of the dishes that most surprised me, the shrimp and vegetable tempura accompanied by wasabi salt and made with a gluten-free flour that gives it a unique consistency. I have never eaten such a crisp and compact tempura in Japan, absolutely delicious.
Then come the dishes of mixed sushi (rice cooked and served at a correct temperature), shake don and kaisen don which is a triumph of freshness accompanied with soy sauce aside handcrafted with kombu seaweed and katsuobushi which give it a delicately smoked aroma.
All this is accompanied by the excellent Konishi Hiyashibori Gold sake recommended by the staff, fresh and aromatic, perfect for this incredible dinner.
If you are a wine lover, you will find the relative list selected by Sandra Ciciriello, sommelier of Viva, interesting.
To complete it all, in this minimalist but welcoming setting, there is no shortage of Japanese whiskeys, umeshu and yuzo.
If instead you want to opt for omakasè, I recommend you book at the counter because watching the master at work is undoubtedly an integral part of this fantastic experience.
The tasting consists of six dishes and, at the end, a dessert. All courses are very delicate and complex, a true experience of taste and elegance out of the ordinary.
The dishes may vary depending on availability: Ichikawa in fact only offers what is fresh and available on the same day.
Dining at Ichikawa is an experience to be absolutely granted, for a special occasion or simply for a pampering with the person you love. Here everything is in the right place and there is really nothing that will disappoint you, not to mention that the same quality can be found by ordering the dishes on the menu via Deliveroo.
The bill is obviously related to the quality of what is proposed and therefore totally justified.
I can say that Ichikawa is one of the best Japanese restaurants I've ever tried, really well done!
Alcune immagini del menù omakasè / Some pictures of omakasè menu
📍 Via Lazzaro Papi 18, Milan
📞 +39 02 4775 0431