Koya is a serious Japanese udon (noodles) restaurant and also one of my favourite places in Soho for a quick meal. The only problem is that more often than not it involves a bit of queueing. Udon is the thing to order here as half of the menu consist of udon items. There are three ways to have it here: hot noodles in hot broth, cold noodles with hot broth and cold noodles with cold dipping sauce. Personally I prefer to have the noodles (cold) served on the side.
The space is very small with one bigger room and a small space sitting in front of an equally small kitchen.
This time we skipped starter and went straight for noodles. I almost always order this set when I come here. The tempura is good, light and crisp. The firm udon noodles has good resistance and chewiness.
The dip sauce which I guess is a combination of soy sauce, mirin has just enough flavour to go with the udon. Udon here is not about rich flavours but more about subtle finesse. This is the kind of food I can imagine eating on a daily basis without worrying too much about balancing with exercising.
I very much like the simplicity of the food here. It’s a personal preference but if it’s your thing then simplicity is done very well here. I have never seen this place not full during peak hours and there’s a reason for that. I wouldn’t say it’s the cheapest udon place in London, but definitely one of the best.
For more photos from Koya, please visit my Flickr set.
49 Frith St
London W1D 4SG
Tel. +44 (0)20 7434 4463 (no reservations)