Modern, fine-dining and contemporary Japanese cocktail bar

Monday: 5pm-Late
Tuesday: 5pm-Late
Wednesday: 5pm-Late
Thursday: 5pm-Late
Friday: 5pm-Late
Saturday: 5pm-Late
Sunday: 5pm-Late

Much like the steel and glass tower that extends into the sky directly above it, Kitten aims high with everything. Found at the foot of the Deansgate Square towers, this swish ‘izakaya’ – in Japan, the name for a neighbourhood bar which serves drinks and snacks – boasts both the drinks and the snacks to match its ambition.

So you can pop in for a beer and a plate of sushi if you like. Or you can let loose, and have a once-a-year blow out too. The plush surroundings won’t let you down in either instance.

But unlike some of the upscale-ey places that Kitten might be lumped in with, it’s fun too. The calamari comes ‘Kentucky fried’, and the signature wagyu nigiri arrives under a smoke-filled cloche, for theatre. And yes, the food is taken very seriously here – that wagyu isn’t just A5 grade, it’s A5 ‘plus’ and comes served with real beluga – but it’s all done with a nod and a wink.

Feast on platters of golden roasted duck rolls and black cod, and groan at the crispness of the tempura soft shell crab. Take on the ‘big mamma’, a laden plate of everything the exceptionally skilled sushi chefs in the kitchen have to offer. Or you could go bougie and choose from some top flight otoro or chu-toro bluefin tuna, sourced from sustainable waters in the Mediterranean, or take a slab of wagyu rump from the robata.

Then order a spiky Paloma or their Japanese Slipper to toast the dishes with. And that’s without mention of its wild range of saki, climbing up to a Kubota Manju Junmai, from the storied brewery in Niigata Prefecture.

Kitten is a rare place, where achieving style and substance seems kind of effortless.