After a long week, worringly they seem to be increasingly that way these days, we decided to visit Koya in Soho for some Udon noodles.
Koya has a simple Japanese feel with a blue noren (curtain) hanging outside and simple wooden tables inside. The menus are written on the walls, with everything in both English and Japanese. Individual, clean and simple I was a fan.
Less impressive than the interior was the speed in which the wait staff took our order. Despite having quite a few staff for a small restaurant, they seemed to be rather disorganised and it wasn't until the manager / owner noticed our plight and sent someone over that we finally managed to order.
Umeboshi - pickled plums
We started with some umeboshi (pickled plums £2.30) that were sour and had a developing heat as you ate them. A nice little appetiser.
We also ordered some samphire tempura (£5.90) from the specials board. The batter was light and crispy, coating the soft samphire. Accompanying the tempura was a small pile of moorish lime salt.
After our starters came the main event, bowls of handmade udon noodles. I ordered the kizami (£8.40), udon noodles served with fried tofu with spring onions. When the bowl was placed in front of me my initial thought was "is this it?", but I was soon enjoying the purity of the dish. The udon were thick, with a slight chew, and the incredibly clear lightly flavoured fish stock felt like a detox.
It was a nice way to end a rather hectic week.
All the photos are suspect phone pics, apologies
49 Frith Street