Angelo Sato’s first bento box shop — Mission Sato — opened today, underground inside Old Street Station. The bento box kiosk shares a unit Mama’s Jerk and Gourmet Market’s coffee shop. Eater London stopped in this lunchtime for a first-look at the eagerly-awaited takeaway concept by a chef who has worked at many of the world’s restaurant kitchens, including Narisawa, RyuGin and DEN in Japan; Story and Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in London; and Eleven Madison Park in NYC.
As Eater London first reported, Sato is planning to roll out the bento box grab-and-go sites over the next five years. Currently the only confirmed site is on Bermondsey Street — where Sato is cooking in Mission’s central kitchen — which will open to the public on 8 August next week.
Although prices were originally said to start at £6, on the opening day the cheapest available bento box was priced at £8. Angelo Sato confirmed that prices would continue to start at £8. The donabe onigiri clay pot rice balls are not yet available, but off-menu Japanese snacks were offered to customers.
Mission Sato, staffed today by Angelo’s brother John Paul and sister Emily, is a welcome addition to the lunchtime takeaway scene in Old Street/Shoreditch and, for the price — given Sato’s experience and the quality of produce being used — a potential game-changer for the casual Japanese market in London. Mission Sato’s prices are comparable to Itsu and Abokado, both of whom operate in the Old Street area.
Eater London sampled three bento boxes: ‘The humble chicken’, ‘Pride of a nation’ (tuna) and ‘Fantasy of salmon’. The attention to detail and level of refinement is unusually advanced for a takeaway concept.