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|Address:||Fifth Floor, 240 Regent Street (entrance 30 Argyll Street), London W1B 3BR|
|Tel:||020 3589 3945|
|Price: £55.00||Wine: £22.50||Champagne: £72.50|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sat 12N-2.30pm 5.30-10.30pm (Thurs-Sat -11pm) Sun 12N-4pm|
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Visited Aqua Kyoto last night and must say whilst the food was very good I am not sure it was entirely worth the money, The venue itself is beautifully decorated and there is a breathtaking view of London from the roof terrace. I am sure dining out here in the Summer will be of great demand. You can tell the owners of this restaurant have ploughed a lot of cash in to do the venue up as it's very plush inside however there feels like there is something missing in tems of the atmosphere. It feels a bit souless and clinical, couldn't quite put my finger on it though…
Anyway, back to the food. My fundemental issue with Aqua Kyoto is the service which functions like an expensive Wagamamas or Ping Pong. That's fine for those restaurants as they are cheap and that's what you expect from them but not when you are paying £80 per head (thats what our meal came to). I do not feel that is acceptable for a high end restaurants with (probable) Michelin star pretensions. We were only told this after we had ordered and we were also seated 25 mins late with a promise of complimentary drinks which never turned up. The actual dishes turn up whenever they are cooked so when you are seven hungry blokes with healthy appetities, this is not very condusive to having a great dining experience. So what did we order? A selection of starters such as the delicious terrayaki chicken thigh skewers which were superbly cooked; tempura prawns and veg which were very delicate but to be honest no better or worse than I have had at Ping Pong. Delicious and amazingly put together scallop, prawn, and caviar cake like construction ( I forget what the actual name of the dish is). The mains is where the restaurant excelled itself. Mine was the seared tenderloin of beef with japanese mustard and a side order of udon noodles with mushrooms and beans. The beef was beautifully cooked and melt in the mouth. We were there for over two hours in total and had the food turned up cooked together rather than turn up sporadically so one person had a starter and five didnt for half an hour, then the rest turned up in drips and drabs over another fifteen minutes, I would be writing a fully glowing review. However, with the kind of prices being charged I can't see how the owners think that is acceptable. My other issue was the cold clinical and impersonal service of the place.. The waiting staff behaved like robots, they were not rude but I wouldn't say entirely warm and again that doesn't lend itself to the best dining experience. I am sure Aqua Kyoto will do well but even with the great food (good but not so good I'd choose this place over somewhere else) I am not sure I would be too enthusiastic about either recommending the place or going there again myself.