I should probably be grateful that Ramen Addicts Anonymous is not a thing – because if it were, I’d definitely be first in line. My most recent bowl of broth came from the new Kanada-Ya restaurant that’s opened just off Haymarket. You could be forgiven for not seeing the original restaurant (just behind Tottenham Court Road and across the road from Google’s London HQ), as the huge line of hungry Japanophiles queued outside tend to obscure it from view. So the new Haymarket branch is a blessing – it’s bigger, and takes bookings.
Both restaurants have design-led interiors in which to enjoy the traditional dishes, with Asian beers, iced green teas and sake.
Ramen-wise, Kanada-Ya take a slightly different approach to other kitchens, ensuring they remove all impurities from the bone broth as it cooks, to give “a clarity of taste and appearance” that you don’t find anywhere else.
Noodles are made in-house using machinery imported from Japan, and you can choose exactly how you want them cooked, from firm to soft. Then there’s the Secret Sauce… All of these elements come together to create a bowl of delicious, hearty, comforting goodness.
Add in the small plates of truffle-salted edamame (the best I’ve ever tasted), fried chicken and onigiri, and the mind-blowingly good matcha and black sesame soft serve desserts, and you have a cheap and speedy dinner that hits the spot every time.
Haymarket: 3 Panton Street, SW1Y 4DL / Holborn: 64 St Giles High Street, WC2H 8LE