Hit and miss
When the legendary Koya was closed down last summer, I was wondering if I can find another place in London that offers top notch udon beside its sister venue the Koya Bar. Udon is a big part of a dining culture in Japan, and also a more healthier alternative choice to ramen. So when Japan Centre, the popular Japanese grocery retailer launched Ichiryu, I was generally excited to see how its udon would compare. Ichiryu positioned itself as a Hakata Udon House, specialise in handmade noodles alongside other classic Japanese items such as tempura and hakata bun.
The prawn tempura was a major disappointment, it was pre cooked in advance and lack seasoning, the only upside was that the prawn itself still tasted fresh. Cod tempura was also decent at best, it tasted very much like your high street chippy's batter cod but not as crunchy or crispy on the batter clothing. Niku beef udon with matcha udon was odd, the sukiyaki beef was marinated wonderfully, containing a good balance of savoury and sweet flavours. But I failed to taste any matcha flavours from the udon, while it was silky in texture, I didn't understand while i would pay the extra £1.50 for the so called "matcha udon" The tonkotsu udon was also a mixed bag, the pork was off dry and tasted rather blanch, however, the ontama egg was simply perfect, it had a lovely smooth and melt in your mouth sensation.
|...with matcha udon|
What I paid:
£9 per head
Average cost without drinks and services:
84 New Oxford St, London WC1A 1HB