Saturday, 15 March 2014

Koba 夕火 Korean Restaurant - London Rathbone Street

Finally I met up with Miss Posh a few weeks ago. It's been almost a year or so since we've been out to eat together. We're such busy ladies that we can't find the time to enjoy a dinner together. Plus I got moody with her at one point last year. My bad!! We're both bad ¬,¬""!!

Miss Posh wanted try out Koba after her friend went there and showed off some food. I've actually wanted to come here in the past, but the prices looked so expensive!

We got to the place too early as they don't actually open for dinner until 6 pm. And if you don't have a reservation you'll be seated nearer to the door unfortunately. Anyway before we dined there, Miss Posh and I walked around the area as we had a good 20 minutes to wait!! I never knew that behind Tottenham Court Road there was a whole load of eateries hidden away from all the electronic shops and homeware stores. I have a feeling I would be visiting Tottenham Court Road more often than usual. ^_^

Koba's Asian name is 夕火 (Canto: jik fo; Mando: Xihuo) which are Chinese characters. This literally means "evening fire". So when it's dusk and the sun sets it creates a fire like sky. Nice name! I'm afraid I don't know the meaning of Koba, it might be the direct Korean translation to the Chinese characters, (just guessing here!).
Koba 夕火

Koba from across the street

Inside Koba
We got there by 6 pm after touring around the area. We were going to turn away from Koba as there were so many different eateries to choose from. Plus we were both hungry! Miss Posh and I were seated neat the front of the restaurant as we hadn't booked a table unfortunately. It was cold that day but we beared it.
Miss Posh has never eaten Korean food before, so this was her very first time. We had a long look at the menu which were full of pictures, so we ordered quite a bit of food for the both of us to try out.

We both ordered this Ginger drink. Miss Posh pointed out that it tasted like ginger beer without the fizz. Hmmm. It did taste similar! It's rather pricey this drink too.
Ginger drink
Miss Posh ordered some mandoo. These were well grilled. :D
Mandoo
I ordered the assorted kimchi pickles. These, I have to say, are the BEST kimchi I've ever had. The radish cubes were seasoned very well. They were not salty and had the rice spiciness to it. I had bought some in the shop once and it tasted salty and quite bitter. The cucumber were seasoned nicely. Not salty, a bit sweet and spicy and still had a very good crunch to it. The kimchi cabbage was VERY GOOD!! I enjoyed this very, very much. 
Assorted Kimchi
The pancakes are often a very amongst my friends. So I ordered the pajeon (spring onion pancake) which included some seafood. This was cooked very well. Miss Posh was impressed too!! She said she needed to find the recipe, so I'm hoping she makes me some too!! ^_^
Pajeon (Spring onion pancake)
And now comes the barbeque... I felt like I was in Korea as they also serve the meat with lettuce and spring onions.
Garnishes
My white rice...
Bap (steamed rice)

The grilling is about to begin!
We ordered the assorted beef which is the most popular item in Korea.
Assorted beef
And the grilling starts. Unfortunately we didn't get to it ourselves like they do so in Korea. The waiting staff kept checking and doing it for us, which I didn't mind at all. The waitress attending us was explaining that the because the slices are so thin they should only be flipped once to retain the juices. Well this is common news as they chefs cook burgers and steaks the same way. Plus I've watched a lot of Korean food dramas and also watched one season of The F Word showing how to cook beef the right way!

The best we had were the marinated slices! Excellent stuff!! Mashita! 맛있다! (Delicious!).
Yummy :)



Big pieces of beef there...

The marinated meat
Miss Posh also ordered a seafood bibimbap. Unfortunately she didn't like it. She said it was the smell and possibly the raw that didn't agree with her. Oh well. And I was too full to eat it. :(
Seafood bibimbap
She also didn't like the miso soup that came with it. I guess she doesn't like the taste and smell of tofu either... It's not that bad! I love tofu!
Miso soup
Our bill came....
The bill was expensive including service charge!!!!!!!
We stayed there for just over an hour and the total bill came to a whopping £92.10! What the heck! Both of us were in shock! Woah!! Well for one thing service charge added to the cost!! Ban service charge in restaurants!! I had paid majority of it, and Miss Posh said she would treat me next time! Yay!! ^_^

Make sure you save up for this type of restaurant...

My geeky rating: 5/5

Good points:
- Although VERY EXPENSIVE, quality of food was great
- Very friendly service
- BEST kimchi ever ^_^

Bad points:
- Don't get to grill your own meat
- Service charge
- Have to book a table beforehand to get a good seat

Address: 11 Rathbone St, London W1T 1NA
Telephone: 020 7580 8825 (make sure you book that table)

Menu: http://www.menuspring.com/restaurants/koba-menu-london-uk-1712


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