Grillno Restaurant is a minimal restaurant located in Saitama, Japan, designed by Keiji Ashizawa. Only a few minutes walk from Kawaguchi station (one of the largest Tokyo commuter towns) Grillno is a small and cozy, 26 seat restaurant, run by one of my old, good friends. Since starting his career as a chef, the architect has been supporting him with the planning of his restaurants. As Grillno is a restaurant specialized in smoked and grilled dishes, they began by planning an open kitchen and a long concrete counter around the kitchen so that people could enjoy watching the chef cooking while eating.
Together with the counter, they designed a long suspended light made of steel to illuminate the dining area evenly. They believe that good restaurants can welcome people in many situations – whether you come by yourself, with your friends/family or for your night out. To make the most out of the space as possible, they planned different types of seating arrangement: A long counter table with a rounded end so that 3-4 people can sit around, some tables for two or four, and a sofa seat. With a few rough materials, worked expertly by craftsmen, we tried to achieve a relaxing atmosphere with moments of tension to match the food and hospitality.
Photography by Kengaku Tomooki
View more works by Keiji Ashizawa