Tonkotsu Soho 1

63 Dean Street , London, W1D 4QG

4 reviews

34 Japanese Soho

  • Tonkotsu Soho London ramen restaurant
  • Tonkotsu Soho London ramen restaurant

SquareMeal Review of Tonkotsu Soho

Tokyo has some 4,000 ramen-ya and London has barely more than a handful but, thanks to Tonkotsu, authentic ramen noodles are having a moment. This pint-sized joint has only a sliver of space on Dean Street to play with, so it has gone for a true Tokyo-meets-Soho experience (cramped surrounds, hard seats, no frills, no bookings and a minimal menu) – although the latter is what the customers really care about. The kitchen takes a few things and does them very well – from assorted takes on ramen involving pork belly, smoked haddock et al to perky handmade gyoza and a handful of sides including crunchy chicken karaage. Noodles and beer are happy bedfellows, so the drinks list focuses on hip craft brews and oriental imports – although you can also sip saké, shochu and Japanese whiskey too.

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7.3

Food & Drink: 7.0

Service: 6.8

Atmosphere: 6.8

Value: 7.5

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Christopher D. 01 September 2014

The house ramen is delicious, service is great - prices not fantastic but no worse than most places. Certainly deserves more than an average user rating of 3 stars.

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 2.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Beth J bronze reviewer 15 May 2013

So after attempting to try the highly acclaimed Ramen and in house made noodles at Tonkotsu numerous amounts of times, seeing the queue (just let me book will you?!), turning and walking off to find another suitable restaurant, I finally made it through the door. I decided to have a lettuce leaf for my lunch, which allowed me to head straight to the restaurant after finishing in the office in the hope of getting a seat, which I did. A plank of wood, a rulers length wide and a chair facing the wall. I was meeting a friend that I haven't seen in months, I wanted to see her face, not the painted exposed brick wall so asked to move to a table that had just become free behind us. Apparently this was the worst possible thing I could do. From friendly service when entering, to just a bit ‘offish’ from then on. I am a paying customer and there was no queue at the door, I don't really see the problem. I ordered one of many yummy beers from the menu and the Tonkotsu Ramen, when in Rome! The Ramen was lovely, as many people have said, you really can taste the difference from the watery, tasteless pre-made noodles to their almost wholewheat looking strings of loveliness. The thin slices of pork was melt in the mouth and the perfectly cooked egg slowly turns the stock from thin and watery (albeit tasty!) to thick and silky. I did however have a bit of food envy, my friend ordered the Tokyo Ramen… to die for. By the end I needed to satisfy my sweet tooth so we ordered two tubs of ice-cream, one Vanilla and one salted caramel. Not particularly authentic but great! At £3.50 a pop you wonder if a bit of ice-cream is worth it, well it is. They definitely placated my sugar needs! All in all, great evening, and nice food. But whatever you do, don't ask to swap to the uninhabited table. This kind of behavior appears to be frowned upon.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

Grumbling Gourmet platinum reviewer 11 November 2012

In essence, it's simple. Pick your base stock and key ingredient, add extra noodles or soft boiled egg if you will and serve. This simplicity is what for some can elevate the humble ramen noodle dish to an art form. Here the soft egg was burnished bronze perfection, lightly gelatinous white leaking golden savoury depth into the clear stock, thickening and enriching almost like butter. The noodles were perfectly cooked with a slight snap to them (though I'm no expert on the subject) and sank into the life giving, clear and umami packed stock. With expertly crisped chicken karaage alongside, it's a simple, satisfying and savoury lunch.

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Meowsy 29 August 2012

Hey what happened to your noodle? I mean noodle. Not soup. I discovered Tonkotsu a month ago (when I decided I just didn't want to queue to get into Koya) and was extremely pleased. It was like eating Tonkotsu Ramen in Japan. Actually better than the ones I've ever had. The soup was rich, thick, silky and tasty. Boiled egg was cooked perfectly in soy sauce. The noodle they used was a straight, ocher coloured one and cooked al dente. Finally, a decent ramen joint in London! …so I thought. I went again last night and was disappointed with the ramen I got served. The soup was fine but the noodle was this white, crinkly stuff that was super soft. Basically, it was the cheap stuff. What happened? The chicken karaage, on the other hand was delicious. Crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside. Fried in a super tasty marinade. Service was good. Quick and pleasant staffs. Seats are abit uncomfortable-but that's perfectly OK. It's a ramen joint after all. You get your ramen- eat- pay and come out. Please sort your noodle out. Then I can go back to being a fan.

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