Location: 17-18 Great Newport Street, London WC2H 7JE
Date & Time: Monday 11th March 2019 at 7pm
Cost: £49 total (3 people eating out)
This was a recommendation from co-workers and not actually on our list of restaurants to try. Aside from the usual browsing on Google for reviews, we didn’t really know what to expect.
Venue & Atmosphere
The location that we dined at was a lot smaller than expected especially compared to angles in images online and for a Monday evening, the restaurant was pretty busy.
Due to its small size, table availability was limited. The seating consisted of a combination of benches and stools, standard tables and chairs as well as booths. We waited for about 25/30 minutes before we were seated. Service wasn’t the best but they weren’t rude either, maybe just too busy to remember that we hadn’t received menus yet.
❀ Food order ❀
CHICKEN KATSU CURRY – £11.90
added okra £1.50
SHRIMP KATSU CURRY – £12
added okra £1.50
JAPANESE BBQ CURRY – £12.90
All meals came with standard portion of rice (option to increase if preferred).
❀ Drinks ❀
Iced Lemon tea £1.90
Hot lemon tea £1.90
SHRIMP KATSU CURRY
Katsu curry is not usually an option I would go for on the menu but we’ve got to be open to trying new things right?! The shrimp katsu caught my eye but unfortunately didn’t live up to my expectations. The curry and rice was nothing to write home about but pleasant, it was the shrimp that completely let this dish down. I can’t stand soggy batter, it’s a bit of a texture and taste thing. To me it’s as though the batter is not cooked probably and unfortunately this is exactly how the shrimp was. I couldn’t eat them, the outside was crispy but the inside was soggy. Not my cup of tea at all. The extra £1.50 I paid for the okra didn’t do anything for the dish, but I guess I got some greens in.
CHICKEN KATSU CURRY
The chicken curry was seriously nothing special unfortunately. Don’t get me wrong, the food was ok but I felt it was nothing to talk about. Particularly the curry, which I had expected to be the main feature and would have had some va-va-voom to it, was JUST standard. I couldn’t differentiate anything interesting about it and wouldn’t have been able to tell the difference with one from a store. That sounds harsh, but I like to spend money and eat things that make me feel special. THIS DIDN’T. Personally I wouldn’t return, but I’m glad I have tried it. The chicken as you can see from the images, was just breaded chicken, again nothing loud to taste or remember. However, I will say the quantity of the meal was reasonable and they were not stingy with the curry. To me it was the right amount! I like my food dripping and smothered in sauce.
This restaurant has many stellar reviews but just didn’t cut it for us. We haven’t had much katsu so don’t really have anything to compare it too, which could arguably mean that our mediocre experience of the food could be more down to the fact that the dish isn’t really a palette pleaser for us as oppose to the restaurant doing a bad job. When we visit Japan, we’ll try a katsu meal and see if there is a difference or if Coco Ichibanya is truly as authentic as people claim.
Overall restaurant rating:
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