Billed as 'a new creative and modern fusion concept, RAI will open later this month on 21 January.
The fine dining restaurant will serve an omakase-style multi-course menu featuring ingredients such as the highest-grade Hyōgo Prefecture Kobe and Kagoshima wagyu beef from Japan; sanpuku - nori from Japan’s Ariake Sea; koshihikari rice and aged soy sauce. British ingredients including cave-aged Dorset cheddar and English truffles will also feature.
It will serve a tasting menu, priced from £110 per person with optional supplement courses featuring the signature kobe beef (£65) and nigiri (£28) also be available.
The restaurant’s décor will reflect its modern style of cooking with neutral interiors that draw inspiration from the philosophy of minimalism and Japanese design. Design features will include traditional wood paneling, accent tiling and artwork by 18th century Japanese ukiyo-e painter Hokusai Katsushika. It will use crockery designed by Rickie Cheuk that have been made using recycled materials such as plastics, scrap metals and wood.
Rai began his cooking career in Japanese restaurant Kotetsu in Kathmandu before spending more than a decade working in some of London’s most well-known Japanese restaurants, including Nobu and Tsukiji Sushi.
He launched Hot Stone's first restaurant in Islington’s Chapel Market in 2018, and followed that up with the second site in Fitzrovia last year.
It is not known at this point whether the chef will look to relaunch Hot Stone's second site in a new location.
RAI is one of a number of high-end Japanese restaurants to launch in the capital at the start of this year.
Restaurateur Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini and chef Ivan Simeoli will launch their debut UK restaurant Itaku in Fitzrovia this month combining Italian ingredients with Japanese flavours and techniques; and 10-seater counter-style Japanese restaurant Roji will also open in Mayfair this month. Run by husband and wife chefs Tamas Naszai and Tomoko Hasegawa it will serve a hyper-seasonal menu focusing on British produce.
Tokyo steakhouse Aragawa, which is known for its high quality Kobe beef, is also reportedly coming to the UK this spring.