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Restaurants, Japanese Waterloo
3 out of 5 stars

Time Out says

3 out of 5 stars

The first London outpost of a global ramen chain.

If you don’t count a six-month Chinatown pop-up, this is the first outpost of international ramen chain Yamagoya to hit London. And yes, the front dining area of this small site, with its pale woods and stocks of traditional condiments, has a simple charm. That is, until you approach the counter: then things get a little fast-foody, right down to drinks in the chiller and the buzzers to tell you your meal is ready for collection.

The food is decent. From the short menu, the best option is, unsurprisingly, the signature Yamagoya ramen. While there are thicker, creamier bone broths in town, it had both good flavour and depth. Likewise, the noodles could have been more springy, but when you factor in the deliciously fatty slices of pork and half a soft-cooked soy-marinated egg resting on its surface, this is £8.90 well spent. Just steer clear of the yuzukara ramen – its citrus flavour is overbearing.

Also good were juicy chicken karaage and generously filled (if slightly oily) pork and herb gyoza. For comfort food, the chicken chashu don (mellow meat, rice and pickles) ticks all the boxes. And yes, they still do a £3 raindrop cake – a clear, flavourless, traditional jelly, popular with Insta-pilgrims – though only if you’re ordering a main course too.


Address: 49 The Cut
Transport: Tube: Waterloo
Price: Dinner for two with drinks: around £50.
Opening hours: MON-FRI 11:30-22:30 SAT 12:00-22:30 SUN 12:00-22:00
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