There's a new kid on the block in Soho. The Bone Daddies-owned Shackfuyu is a welcome addition to Old Compton Street, and with its hybrid Japanese-American-Korean-inspired dishes, it epitomises the flavours of the melting pot for which central London is known and loved.

It was the scene for my dinner with a Cambridge friend who I had managed to not see for three years (seriously, time, where do you go?) I'd picked it because I've loved all the other Bone Daddies offerings: the eponymous noodle bar is one of my favourite hangouts, while Flesh and Buns has been privy to an excellent sake-tinged girls' night out. And it turns out that Shackfuyu do the best catch-up food: small plates to fuel the protracted 'tell me what you've been doing for...er, the last three years' chats, as well as providing easy conversation hooks centred around the unusual combination of ingredients on offer. 

My friend is well renowned for his love of spice (in fact, Chili is one of his nicknames...), so one of our dishes had to be the hot stone rice. Quite literally - rice, sweetcorn, piquant chilli and beef mixed up in a giant hot stone bowl, the heat from which causes the rice to take on a crispy texture. The big steaming bowl and the theatre of the mixing reminded me of a traditional Chinese hot pot or Japanese shabushabu! 

Also brought to the table: sweet, unctuous miso aubergine slices that smacked of umami, sprinkled with bubu arare (puffed rice) and seaweed. The kind of dish that makes your knees metamorphose into jelly.

A classic mac and cheese given a Japanese spin with mentaiko (fish roe), plus bacon and cock scratchings. The latter is always bound to provoke giggles, and is particularly brilliant with Bone Daddies' ramen...

My stand-out dish - the 'prawn toast masquerading as okonomiyaki', which also wins best plate name of the evening. I have fond memories of both elements of the dish - I chomped my way through many a prawn toast triangle in the various Chinese restaurants of my childhood, and tried okonomiyaki for the first time on the street in Tokyo. As soon as this plate was set down I knew it was special - the heat from the food makes the bonito flakes on top curl up and dance like Chinese fortune-telling fish. And they weren't just pretty - biting into them produced a 'so crispy I could die' moment.

Fried Korean chicken wings drenched in a thick, spicy sauce. Orange sauce EVERYWHERE. My guest lapped them up, but I think I prefer my wings slightly less spicy and accompanied by blue cheese sauce, celery and curly fries, à la Orange Buffalo. Dammit, I'm hungry again...

And to go with the food, we rolled with a couple of Bone Daddies punches. 

All the dishes were right up my street, but unfortunately, I couldn't eat as much as I would have liked and had a horrible headache, which I initially chalked up to the alcohol. Upsetting, and of course, my dinner guest chided me for not living up to my reputation for hoovering up everything on the table. The confusion was cleared up the next morning, when I realised that I'd caught a nasty infection that had been doing the rounds at work. Fun times! Despite my lack of appetite, I managed to develop food envy over a neighbouring table's kinako French toast with green tea icecream and have since seen it plastered all over Instagram. Which means I'm going to have to do a Bone Daddies and make this pop-up my new Soho go-to. Life is hard, guys...

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