I tried Koya - Frith's Street's Japanese udon bar - for the first time last night, which is a sad thing in itself, made all the more upsetting by the fact the restaurant is closing its doors at the end of May (facepalm).
Koya is a typical Japanese eatery, in that it serves just one thing, udon, plus a variety of small plate starters to share (or not!). The Japanese pride themselves on doing things to perfection and unlike in, say, an Italian restaurant where you're likely to eat everything from pasta and risotto to hearty stews and steaks, restaurants are usually more specialised, for example just serving ramen, tonkatsu or tempura or, as my dad genuinely once experienced, a whole 11 course tasting menu revolving around sardines. But back to the udon!
The interesting thing about Koya is that it's perfectly suited to this mad, temperamental May weather we've been having. There are three types of dishes on offer - hot noodles in hot soup, cold noodles next to hot soup and cold noodles to be dipped in cold dipping sauce - plus sides like tempura, grilled chicken and seaweed. Wednesday was blazing sunshine and verging on sandals territory but yesterday was miserable; it poured with rain all day, my feet were soaked through the holes in my shoes and you'd be forgiven for thinking it was February, so hot noodles in hot soup proved the perfect foil to the merciless English elements.
With just a few weeks before Koya closes its doors for good, I'd definitely recommend a visit, whether it's cold and wet or blazing hot. I'm crossing my fingers the sun will be out again before the month is out so I can go back and try those cold noodles!