Iban Gonzalez, the right host at the back of the group, Mr. Ito, ‘japs’ of good vibes


The Basque businessman has just opened his fourth store, Casa Senior. Ito, a Japanese tavern where you can have delicious food and is surrounded by nice people

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At the door of Eban Gonzalez, Casa Sr. Ito, in the chamber.

Sites are built by people. Some doubts about it. In the group Mr. Ito they start in Iban González (San Sebastian, 1978), a host who has loved building restaurants, and already has four, and is turning them into meeting places where you can eat delicious food and enjoy it. Besides, surrounded by very nice people. Just opened the Japo-CA tavern, Casa Mr. It’s time for Ito (Marx de Riscal, 6), in front of his brother Asiako, and once again to impregnate the complex the vision that has given him so much joy Ever since I opened Mr. Calle de Pelayo to Ito, the Japanese with the best vibes in the capital.

“I think of hospitality as my home, my home. We build relationships with people who come and have a good time,” he explains with a broad smile as he welcomes two clients from the Chueca establishment. We do. Ray Heredia’s ‘Allegra de Vive’ plays in the background. Music is also his thing. ,I like small spaces where I know who is going in and who is going out.“, he says. He doesn’t miss one. “I don’t sell currency, I do what I do with my heart.”

Bao of squid from Casa Sr.  Ito.
Bao of squid from Casa Sr. Ito.

Although he was born in San Sebastian, he spent his childhood and adolescence in Mallorca. “Oh, I had my crazy time,” she remembers. He returned to San Sebastian with his father, finished the BUP and COU and returned to the island. “I worked at night; I was well known, until one day I got tired of it and came to Madrid.” If he was already hard in something, he was looking for life. ,I saw a poster in Madrid’s Samurai restaurant looking for waiters“. And so began his acquaintance with Japanese cuisine.

“I was 14 years old with them.” Until the owners left for Japan. “I was 37 and I didn’t feel like starting at another restaurant.” A client, who turned out to be his accomplice, offered to open it. “Indeed, Mr. Ito’s name is my tribute to the family that owned the samurai.” From the very beginning, his luck helped the team immensely. ,After a year and a half, I called people who were my companions in the samurai to work with me.There was no one to answer. “When I team up I try to balance and adapt to each one’s circumstances. “He interviews all the candidates and believes it to be something intense”. He “likes to see how people react in certain situations. That says a lot.” Lead a team of 45 people to manage four businesses, In six years and with a pandemic in between, it’s not bad.”

Home decoration Mr. It is identity.

At home, Mr. Ito, decoration is once again a mark of identity. Specially created dishes by artist Carlos Viloslada, combined with traditional ceramic pieces, glass lamps purchased at Wallapop and El Rastro and bouquets of dried flowers brought from an Iban country house color the room. The bar with a capacity of eight people is already active. It’s Friday and a few minutes after 2:00 PM. They leave the kitchen – chef’s area and Sergio Montarde group member- Grilled with Anchovy Vinaigrette, Pickled Onions in Modena Vinegar and Seaweed; Ham Crochets with Ibric JoulesOne; Salad with ‘zapotaco’ and spider crab, pickles and kimchi with shrimp bread. Iban presents each dish in detail.

“At each of our establishments, the customer has a different experience. Senior Ito was the samurai cuisine and from then on, we kept changing the menu.” The only thing I don’t understand is the takeaway, “I don’t like it, because I don’t control what happens. You find out about the bad and almost never know about the good,” he argues. In fact, when his partner suggested setting up a ‘takeaway’ place, he declined. “I found it more interesting to build an inn.”

When he uploaded the closure of Mr. Ito de Pelayo, the neighborhood gave him a warm welcome. Also he tirelessly supported them when they closed due to the pandemic. “I think that’s the beauty of it all.” Her favorite thing to read in reviews are the comments that say, “everything so delicious and what a nice team,

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