Yamagoya Soho | Ramen & Raindrop Cake
It all starts, as so many stories do, with a Japanese lorry driver in the year 1969.
His name was (and still is) Masatoshi Ogata, and he had a simple dream: to stop driving lorries, and open his own ramen shop. So he spent three years perfecting his own recipe, getting friends & family to test it (“Another bowl of ramen? Ugh, fiiiiine.”), then built his restaurant with his own hands using scrap wood from a local school.
Skipping almost half a century later, and in 2017 Masatoshi Ogata himself opened his first London location, where he personally oversaw operations in the kitchen. And a mere one year after that, he’s getting a new branch in Soho, in its own Shaftsbury Avenue space which they’ve lined with pale slatted oak and hung with paper lanterns.
The menu will follow the traditional Yamagoya recipe, with classic Japanese small bites (fried pork gyoza, chicken kara-age with a yuzu mayo, etc.) followed by nourishing bowls of ramen. The standout is their signature ‘Yamagoya’, made with a tonkotsu broth, and garnished with Japanese chashu pork belly, marinated bamboo shoot, Kikurage mushroom and nori.
New for the Soho location, they’ve put together Roast Beef ramen topped with slices of rare, locally sourced roast beef, plus leek and spring onion; and a completely vegan Kakiage Curry Rice with fried vegetables, pickled greens, a house special curry, and Japanese rice.
And for dessert? They’re bringing back the famous, completely transparent Raindrop Cake, which they debuted in London last year. Should you try it?
The answer is clear.
NOTE: Yamagoya Soho is due to open on December 15th. We’ll be back then with the full scoop. In the meantime, you can check out their website right HERE.
Yamagoya Soho | 64 Shaftesbury Avenue, W1D 6LU