The team behind Akaiito restaurant in Melbourne have opened the doors to Otōto on Flinders Lane.

Otōto, which translates to younger brother, is a 60-seat venue located downstairs to Akaiito and offers a casual izakaya-style dining experience.

Leading the kitchen is Executive Chef Winston Zhang who is known for creating an award-winning Kojin degustation at Akaiito.

”As people return to the city we wanted our downstairs space to evolve into its own independent venue and offering,” says Zhang.

“As a literal Otōto [to Akaiito], we see it being an informal place to meet friends and share a bite to eat, or to gather for an afterwork drink or weekend celebration.”

The menu consists of sharing plates with items cooked on a Robata grill, in addition to larger dishes that combine traditional Asian techniques with contemporary flavours.

Highlights include mussel escabeche with wagyu bresaola, pickled Jalapeno and toast; Black Angus short rib with kimchi, pickled radish and Bo Ssam sauce, Kingfish sashimi on salt rock, Robata-grilled miso chicken, cured salmon and vegetarian gyoza.

The bar has a sustainable focus and sees bartender Lionel Ong (Gogo bar) team up with consultant George Leung (Maha) to limit waste.

To reduce the use of single-use plastics the pair utilises ecoSPIRITs, an innovative supply chain that eradicates packaging waste.

Ingredients such as fruit are used in its entirety for flavouring syrups, sodas and bases, creative garnishes and dishes.

The Asian-inspired cocktail selection includes a signature nori martini, a sparkling sake-based spritz with butter fat-washed gin, savoury Thai concoctions and Chinese tea-infused craft cocktails.

Local and international wine varietals, craft beers, sake and Japanese whisky is also on offer.

Otōto is open for dinner from 5pm until late, Tuesday to Sunday.