When I heard the original Koya were to close down last year I feared that there would be nowhere else in London to have authentic Japanese food besides sushi and ramen (god forbid places like Taro, which I might or might not review). Thankfully they opened a sister branch, Koya Bar, right next door with a few more dishes besides their fantastic udon.
This was my first visit to Koya Bar, in fact the first time I had even walked past it so I was surprised to see that they had completely reversed their colour palette from white to black, however despite the visual changes the food is still the same. Having drooled over photos of the Gyu-Katsu, more times than I’d liked to admit, it was obvious I had to order one of those and in my quest to try a different bowl of udon every time I go to Koya/Koya Bar I ordered the Curry Atsu-Atsu. I’ve had pretty bad versions of this in the past so it was the ultimate test for the new Koya Bar.
The Gyu-Katsu was beautifully crispy with a beefy, tender inside. The sauce matched perfectly with the Katsu. The curry udon was good, the udon never a disappointment, the curry tasted good too but unless you’re a curry fanatic there’s no real reason to choose the curry over any other bowl of udon. The potatoes were also unexpectedly harder than I’d like but that’s only a small qualm.
Whilst Koya Bar has been a staple restaurant of mine I must admit the portions aren’t that great for the price. If you are feeling hungry it’s pretty much a given that you’ll want more than just a bowl of noodles and the noodles themselves aren’t the cheapest either. But there’s no doubt Koya Bar fills back in the void left by Koya and still reigns supreme as one of the best places for a bowl of noodles in London.
Address: 50 Frith Street, London, W1D 4SQ
Telephone: They don’t have one! (cleverly)
Mind the Gap:
Panda ate, shot and left.