Esrawe’s Tori Tori restaurant in Mexico City evokes Samurai armour

The fifth Tori Tori Japanese restaurant in the Santa Fe district of Mexico City received the interior design concept from Esware Studios, inspired by spatial exploration and the subtlety of Japanese craftsmanship.

The restaurant “Tori Tori” is a Japanese eatery located in the Santa Fe district of Mexico City. Designed by Esrawe Studio, the interior design of the restaurant is predominately charcoal tones contrasting with pale oak details, to emphasise the scale of the space. It inspires the subtlety and sobriety of Japanese craft and culture.

Located on the ground floor of a corporate office tower, Tori Tori boasts several dining areas and a Japanese “grab-and-go” shop. The monochromatic atmosphere fills the 720sqmt restaurant and encompasses elements of Japanese culture and military history. 

Tori Tori - interior
Tori Tori restaurant by Esrawe Studio

The minds behind Tori Tori restaurant – Esrawe Studio

Tori Tori restaurant in the Santa Fe district of Mexico City isn’t the first Tori Tori restaurant that Esrawe Studio has delivered the design concept for, they also designed the lattice-like restaurant “Tori Tori Temistocles” in Mexico City’s Polanco neighbourhood.

The founder of Esrawe Studio, Hector Esrawe, started the firm in 2003 as an industrial designer and now heads a team of over 100 people, including architects, graphic designers, production and manufacturing experts.

What makes Esrawe Studio so unique is the in-house process from conceptualization to the finishing details, ensuring that each one of the studio’s products is optimally crafted. 

Bar details
Tori Tori restaurant by Esrawe Studio

Materials & Techniques – Oak and monochrome

The monochrome colour palette is emphasised by the various timber installations within the restaurant. One installation in particular takes centre stage as a tall cylindrical structure suspended within a three-storey void.

This structure consists of a grid-like framework with hundreds of pale wood panels arranged at angles to add a subtle nod to Samurai armour. The timber was drawn further into the interior design with all the custom-designed furniture by Esrawe Studio.

The seating is an array of oak framed chairs that have been left as their natural pale colour.

Tori Tori - Restaurant
Tori Tori restaurant by Esrawe Studio

Style & Aesthetics – Samurai armour and Kanji characters 

The ceiling, walls and floor were finished in a deep charcoal black which allows the guests to explore a deeper sense of space. To add texture to the monochrome walls, geometric graphics were embossed as a reference for Kanji characters used in Japanese writing.

The suspended oak structure within the bar area, at the front of the restaurant, reflects the Samurai armour called dō. The structure is surrounded by tall windows providing an ingress of natural light that illuminates the oak, to create a contrasting “light” element within the dark interior.

Tori Tori restaurant by Esrawe Studio

Esrawe Studio has worked on several Tori Tori restaurant projects and in each one they design and manufacture bespoke furniture that’s inspired and developed with a direct orientation towards each space.

Design memento – A temple for sushi lovers 

The most remarkable aspects of this project are the exploration of open space through tones and textures while achieving a personal expression oriented towards a Japanese interpretation. 

The interior design is subtle and intimate which allows guests to build a relationship between themselves and the restaurant’s food all in a serene setting.

Restaurant details
Tori Tori restaurant by Esrawe Studio

The writer’s comment – Elegant Japanese craft

Tori Tori restaurant was executed beautifully by Esrawe Studio with the finest attention to detail. I really enjoy the Kanji characters embossed in the walls; they add another depth to the dark, monochrome surface.


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