Imoya Izakaya, Soi 24, Bangkok.

It’s safe to say that Imoya is hardly the kind of restaurant you stumble across and had my friend Nianne not made a reservation for us there after we went to the Swedish film festival at Emporium, I would be none the wiser to its existence.

Hidden away on the 3rd floor in a non-descript building just next to Taburete restaurant, Immoya is best described as an “Izakaya”, an authentic Japanese restaurant where the focus is more on drinking and socializing than food. It reminded me very much of one of the restaurants I was taken to by Japanese friends in Osaka when they had finished work and they ordered a steady stream of dishes for us to enjoy (along with our numerous Ebisu beers and Sake!)

I was happy when we were seated at one of the private booths on tatami matting as it only added to the ambience and was intrigued as to whether the food would live up to appearances.

We shared a selection of dishes between us; edamame, robata skewers of asparagus wrapped in bacon and marinated mushrooms, tempura vegetables, little grilled sardines and an Okonomiyaki. I first tried okonomiyaki (a type of Japanese pancake) when I was in Kyoto last year and whilst this version didn’t quite meet those heights I was still extremely impressed with it and would definitely visit again to eat this in the rainy season when I will be in full need of such comforting dishes!

In fact I was impressed with everything we ordered, whilst nothing else was particularly complicated, the dishes were all well prepared and perfect snacks to enjoy with our sake. I loved the restaurants buzzy atmosphere and by the time we left I was half expecting to walk out onto a Kyoto side street as opposed to Sukhumvit – which has more to do with the authentic food, surroundings and ambience than the amount of Sake we consumed, honest!

Imoya Izakaya – 3/F, Terminal Shop Cabin, 2/17-19 Sukhumvit Soi 24 Bangkok

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