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Koya

Koya

(Now Closed)
Noodle House, Japanese Restaurant, and Asian Restaurant££££
Soho
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  • The experts at The Guardian and Evening Standard recommend this place
    • The Guardian
    • Evening Standard
142 Tips and reviews
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  • David R.
    David RosenbergMay 15, 2013
    Been here 25+ times
    Koya 101: Start with a daily special. Then atsu atsu-wise: Saba or the Curry or Tori Nikomi. Or try the special udon and eat something you've never heard of like Bracken Fern tempura. Rinse/repeat.
  • Holger L.
    Holger LuedorfJuly 9, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    Been two times and really impressed with the quality/authenticity of their food. Try to order from their daily specials menu and don't forget to order any of their pickles!
  • Maral
    MaralJune 24, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    All I am saying is that, if you eat here, you will never feel cold or depressed. You are always smiled at and are left with the choice between the best and the better dish. SOUL FOOD w/ Homemade Udon.
  • Dylan L.
    Dylan LoweAugust 1, 2012
    The undisputed best udon in town – and I can endorse that. Apart from set menu the daily specials are worth sampling. Also taste their side dishes – the braised pork in cider and tempura are divine.
  • Ingrina C.
    Ingrina CarsonAugust 30, 2014
    Been here 5+ times
    Mixed seaweed and curry udon dishes are DELICIOUS. Get here early for dinner so you don't have to queue too long. On the expensive side, but great if you like fresh, homemade noodles and clean broths.
  • Lee P.
    Lee ProvoostDecember 4, 2011
    Udon noodles and nothing but udon noodles. Amazing little gem. If you can, go for the little table in the kitchen where you sit with the kitchen staff. Also order the poached egg side dish, brilliant!
  • Scott G.
    Scott GFebruary 1, 2015
    Actually a very good Japanese restaurant, lots of unique dishes to choose from but they do have some old favourites too. Beware though, this place ain't cheap so you may spend more than a pretty penny
  • Holger L.
    Holger LuedorfSeptember 22, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    Can't go wrong here but if you need to be inspired: Have the Ten Zaru Udon on a warm day, and ALWAYS order off the Specials menu
  • Bình H.
    Bình HàMarch 17, 2015
    Anything is safe to try, they have an authentic, balance flavour for the broth. A simple plain udon is enough to enjoy. Their rice dishes are nice but I not too dif from others. Focus on the noodle.
  • Tom S.
    Tom SherborneJanuary 31, 2014
    Koya and koya bar have separate doors depending on whether you want to sit at a table or at the bar like a Japanese noodle place. Also free filtered water
  • Shannon L.
    Shannon LimAugust 17, 2014
    If the venison is up on the "specials" board, get it, you won't regret it. The walnut miso udon with wild mushrooms (with tempura batter:extra) will blow your mind
  • Jean P.
    Jean PJanuary 29, 2014
    Generally Japanese restaurants in London really ugly no matter how expensive are. This udon place is no exception. Still a nice udon place for UK standard. BTW, tempuras are excellent!
  • Odo
    OdoOctober 5, 2013
    Nice place, always packed. udon was nice, broth missed a bit of developing flavour. Donburi with prawn tempura is really nice, and pork belly not to miss. Full review... Read more
  • Krystle L.
    Krystle LimNovember 22, 2012
    Very good udon, kakuni (pork belly) and hot ginger drink. Sit at the counter to watch the chefs in action. Never-ending queues though www.letravelingfork.wordpress.com
  • Audrey T.
    Audrey TolbertMarch 18, 2014
    Any of the udon dishes will do, just make sure you start off with numerous small plates to share. (Especially if they have the wild sea bass sashimi).
  • joe
    joeMarch 13, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    Best noodle place in london. Udon soup is a bit salty so get the dipping option. Fresh Ginger tea is perfect for a cold day. Everything on menu is freshly made. Expect a line and wait!
  • Ai N.
    Ai NAugust 11, 2013
    We had Kamo Udon and Hiyashi Udon with Natto. (Although, Natto is not for everyone.) Very tasty and happy. This is a very good Japanese noodle restaurant.
  • Angela L.
    Angela LiuMay 3, 2015
    Undoubtedly the best udon in london and do not miss the stuff on the black board too. They are closing at the end of May so folks head down to koya tonight!!!
  • Nono B.
    Nono BouéMay 6, 2014
    Service was a bit weird the last time I came but I still love this place. An authentic piece of Japan in the middle of London. Try some Nattō and Onsen eggs if you haven't yet.
  • Karn R.
    Karn R.April 27, 2011
    Lovely place. For something different, try the cold udon in hot broth (Hiya-Atsu) with vegetable tempura.. Really good. Tori Nikomi is also good served in Japanese small hot pot!
  • Marco V.
    Marco VillaniOctober 22, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    I've been walking pass this place many times and always found a long queue. Today I queued for 30min but the result was excellent, udon noodles are the original Japanese noodle!!
  • Wai Man
    Wai ManMay 25, 2013
    Cold noodles with sesame dipping sauce was yummy! Get there early as they don't take reservations and only give you a table when company is complete
  • Jonathan C.
    Jonathan ChooFebruary 20, 2012
    Get here early, or be prepared to wait up to 30 mins in queue (worth it!). Tempura udon with poached egg, and pork belly are both brilliant!
  • Gi
    GiFebruary 5, 2015
    Yummy yummy!! Real Japanese style!! The kuro kakuni is the best, so soft and delicious!!
  • Sof C.
    Sof CJanuary 24, 2013
    I know it's super popular & there's always a queue, but I find it a bit over priced. My £10 tempura udon came with a single fried prawn, udon noodles and broth; no vegs or any other toppings.
  • David W.
    David WormleyAugust 9, 2014
    The udon noodles are the best I've had, and the rest dish was simple and tasty. I thought that the service was particularly good.
  • John R.
    John RNovember 13, 2010
    Great place! Get here early or you won't have a place at a table. Kakuni highly recommended (pork belly cooked in cider!!) Japanese take on fish'n'chips excellent also.
  • David B.
    David BanNovember 21, 2014
    This noodle shop ain't your average ramen bar - beatifully simple Japanese plates, with plenty of interesting daily specials. Bracken Fern tempura, anyone?
  • Bradley C.
    Bradley CheshamJune 19, 2014
    Lunch - Bowl of noodles for £10 cant go wrong. If you add in a few more dishes can get a bit pricey for what it is. Keep it simple ;)
  • GinMonkey
    GinMonkeyJune 20, 2011
    Get here early if you want to make sure you get a seat, or be prepared to wait! Lovely authentic japanese noodle broths. Best in London. Read more
  • Simon W.
    Simon WillisonJune 10, 2013
    "traditional Udon dishes and season specialities; again reasonable prices and great atmosphere." - http://qr.ae/pW1rs
  • Christine C.
    Christine ChangJune 5, 2012
    Koya was nothing short of amazing. The braised pork belly app and the prawn vegetable tempura are a must try!
  • Yasmine
    YasmineApril 15, 2013
    Very good udon and yummy broth. Worth queuing for. Pork belly starter was tasty. Sake not as impressive.
  • Katerina K.
    Katerina KerrDecember 10, 2014
    Get here early to get a place. Delicious range of udon broths. A definite must try!
  • Joshua N.
    Joshua NguyenMarch 27, 2012
    I always judge an udon place by how legit the beef is and here it's thinly sliced with a bit of fat: legit.
  • Hasan H.
    Hasan HasanSeptember 28, 2012
    "Plain" udon noodles have a great mild broth. Duck donburi comes with big helping of wasabi! Yum
  • Jon H.
    Jon HerbertJune 10, 2010
    Worth the 30 minute wait, got talking to fellow diners who didn't have a bad word to say about Koya. The best Udon Noodles outside Japan. They were not wrong, the Beef udon noodles hit the spot.
  • Alvin T.
    Alvin TienAugust 7, 2014
    A traditional udon place in London. The udon are all homemade.
  • Evening Standard
    Evening StandardMay 14, 2012
    The hot noodles in hot broth includes "buta miso" (£8.80), well seasoned with a pork mince and miso paste. Read more
  • Alessandro M.
    Alessandro MingioneOctober 25, 2014
    Been here 5+ times
    Highest level of craft on udon noodles you'll get in London. Get everything, eat it all.
  • Alexander G.
    Alexander GilbertMarch 3, 2013
    Getting a table at the counter seems bad but it's interesting watching the chefs. Go for the Prawn Tempura!
  • Courtney T.
    Courtney TightSeptember 13, 2014
    The cold dipping noodles with broth on the side is tasty and refreshing for summer.
  • San C.
    San ChowNovember 25, 2014
    Got to Koya shortly after 9pm and no duck or pork udon so got Shabu Shabu beef with onsen tomago. Had a upset stomach within an hour should had skipped the onsen egg.
  • Katy H.
    Katy HAugust 3, 2013
    Great food. Be prepared to line up for an hour to get in. It's small! Well worth it though.
  • Leo C.
    Leo C.February 15, 2016
    Best udon I've had outside of Japan. Well worth the queue to get in.
  • Fionners G.
    Fionners GJanuary 20, 2012
    Been here 5+ times
    Definitely worth visiting if you like Japanese food. Fantastic value for money and beat in the area
  • Jared C.
    Jared CreechNovember 1, 2014
    Just order the special noodles. They know what they are doing.
  • Tatiana M.
    Tatiana MosesMarch 23, 2013
    Chicken and veg Udon, pork udon, veg tempura all checked and worth a slurp!
  • The Guardian
    The GuardianApril 25, 2012
    "There's a lot to be said for sticking to what you're good at – and this tiny Japanese place is very good at making noodles indeed..." Read more
  • Alex M.
    Alex MillerSeptember 24, 2012
    An amazing, hidden Japanese noodle soup with some of the best Udon ever.
  • La Dolce Vita
    La Dolce VitaDecember 16, 2012
    Walnut Miso Udon (Time Out London's 100 Best Dishes)
  • Tien N.
    Tien NguyenNovember 10, 2013
    The pork belly (Kakuni) small plate is great! Melted in your mouth!
  • Scoffers
    ScoffersSeptember 11, 2013
    I've never been a big fan of Udon... Koya's done nothing to change that. Read our full review on Scoff London: http://scofflondon.com/restaurants/koya-review-w1/
  • David T.
    David ThairApril 29, 2012
    Really great food but the prices are questionable. Don't order the pickle unless £2.80 seems like a fair price for a tiny bit of cucumber!
  • Sarah E.
    Sarah EcksteinSeptember 13, 2014
    Was excited to find an udon spot in London, but disappointed with the service and flavour of the broth. Go for the tempura
  • Byron F.
    Byron FizpatrickJanuary 16, 2014
    Great handryer toilet. In fact top notch, met all my sanitary needs.
  • Łukasz K.
    Łukasz KoreckiMay 25, 2013
    I don't is amazing but the place is quite expensive and you can find a place which is as good as Koya but for less money
  • Roberta R.
    Roberta RomagnoliApril 14, 2014
    Excellent. The best udon I ever has outside Japan.
  • Joyce C.
    Joyce ChiaSeptember 4, 2011
    I absolutely loved the udon noodles!! A must if you are a Japanese food lover.
  • Ashton M.
    Ashton McGregorOctober 10, 2010
    Mostly known for it's udon but tempura is also very good (as I'd the beer). Always check out what the specials are
  • Sixty G.
    Sixty GeluApril 3, 2013
    For all it's charm, the restaurant's service is slow: we waited 30mins for our meal. The food is tasty, yet overpriced. However, the staff are charming and helpful.
  • Gabriella R.
    Gabriella RothenbergAugust 27, 2014
    The walnut miso udon is out of this world.
  • Daniella
    DaniellaMarch 23, 2013
    Love the atmosphere of this place. Vegetarian options not great though- extremely bland. And don't order the tempura batter - very bad idea! Friend's meat equivalent dish looked great though.
  • Sean C.
    Sean ChristopherFebruary 3, 2013
    Worth the queue. Haven't found any other udon that compares.
  • Matt N.
    Matt NganSeptember 26, 2014
    Loved the Butajiru! Noodles were yum
  • Yen Chern L.
    Yen Chern LauAugust 15, 2014
    The udon is great. But the specials speak for themselves.
  • Olivia B.
    Olivia BehaegelJanuary 6, 2015
    Hot and hot udon noodles with mackerel. Utterly slurpingly delicious
  • Gaelle N.
    Gaelle NormandOctober 15, 2011
    My reco: mushroom and walnut miso, Cold udon in hot broth. Very filling.
  • Nathan M.
    Nathan MoyJune 23, 2012
    try the cold udon selections, soooo good, it'll change ur life!
  • Oscar G.
    Oscar GomezJune 9, 2013
    The kakuni are just exquisite.
  • Chikae
    ChikaeMarch 19, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    Delicious traditional Udon and Soba just like they do it in Japan. ;)
  • Alex N.
    Alex NikolaouFebruary 18, 2012
    If you like Chinese noodles, this is the place! Otherwise you can pass!
  • Thom W.
    Thom WongMay 24, 2013
    If they have a special, get it.
  • Lizzie M.
    Lizzie MMay 18, 2010
    Been here 5+ times
    The onsen tamago as a topping as opposed to a small dish is great cracked straight into the hot broth. Mega love.
  • Agatha Y.
    Agatha YuAugust 10, 2014
    Good noodles but go to the koya bar next door for more variety!
  • Pammie
    PammieJune 23, 2012
    Tasty!! Trying one of every section of the menu!
  • Joyce C.
    Joyce ChengDecember 20, 2014
    strong noodle game.. Check out their daily specials menu!
  • eevil m.
    eevil midgetMay 5, 2012
    I love this place. Best seat is at the bar by the kitchen.
  • Irakli A.
    Irakli AgladzeMarch 30, 2013
    Best japanese food you've ever tried. Choose anything, won't be disappointed.
  • Hoon K.
    Hoon KimAugust 17, 2012
    When the winter gets cold, I always stop by at Koya for some udon.
  • Kyungsik Y.
    Kyungsik YoonMay 11, 2013
    Udon is great! Can't say same thing about Kyudons though...
  • Alessio F.
    Alessio FascioloSeptember 21, 2014
    Cold noodles with dip sauce are amazing!
  • Mike P.
    Mike PantelidesMay 1, 2012
    Udon Tempura is the best value by far!
  • Lani L.
    Lani LamDecember 27, 2011
    Excellent udon and tempura. Worth the wait!
  • Zoë D.
    Zoë DoyleMarch 17, 2014
    Great sake and the specials live up to their name
  • Vincent I.
    Vincent IadevaiaOctober 22, 2014
    Been here 10+ times
    Quite possibly the greatest bowl of udon you will ever consume.
  • joe
    joeMay 28, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    Ginger tea formula seems to have changed. Maybe they started using powder. Please don't decrease the quality!
  • Jakub
    JakubMarch 19, 2012
    Awesome awesome awesome. Get anything from the menu and die.
  • Natarie
    NatarieMarch 29, 2014
    Good but pricey and there's a wait, portions are also small.
  • adam w.
    adam wislockiMarch 13, 2015
    noodles, stout & honey pork belly, smoked mackerel
  • Jimmy R.
    Jimmy RobinsonJuly 4, 2014
    Been here 5+ times
    Bad bad bad, their glass shattered and cut my hand, no apology from staff for shoddy product and nothing offered for my cut hand with shards of glass in it!! Disgusting service. Will never return!!
  • M.
    M.May 15, 2014
    Real udon, but a tad pricy for what it is.
  • Mitch C.
    Mitch CutmoreMarch 13, 2015
    I'll be back in a heartbeat for the udon curry 😘
  • Suraj A.
    Suraj AcharyaMay 28, 2013
    Perfect for a cold and rainy day in May.
  • Metro.co.uk
    Metro.co.ukSeptember 10, 2010
    It's not much to look at behind its traditional noren curtain, but it's so worth venturing inside to discover what all the fuss is about - it's sensational. Metro gave it 4 out of 5 Stars. Read more
  • Audrey Q.
    Audrey QFebruary 15, 2011
    Been here 10+ times
    My favourite dish is the mushroom walnut miso
  • Anton P.
    Anton PerreauOctober 19, 2014
    Been here 5+ times
    The cold udon with hot broth
  • Si O.
    Si OnaraNovember 2, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    Great noodle but the worst service ever. The staff are rude need a day at Pret training in customer service. Went to Masala Zone instead where we were greeted warmly.
  • laris
    larisApril 24, 2013
    the hot udon nuki was outstanding with a tiny note of ginger
  • Jo J.
    Jo JohnsonFebruary 23, 2012
    OMG beef curry udon special! Delicious!
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