This June, beloved udon noodle connoisseur Koya will launch Koya & Ko., its first ever chef collaboration series at its Koya Ko location in Hackney.
Kicking off on 24 June, the Koya & Ko. series will feature limited-edition udon creations from chef friends Max Rocha (Cafe Cecilia), Florence Knight (Sessions Arts Club), Benjamin Chapman (Kiln, Smoking Goat) and more, with each chef putting their twist on Koya’s signature udon and dashi, reflecting their own unique culinary style and spanning cuisines from around the world.
The dishes will be available as rotating blackboard specials exclusively at its Broadway Market location, each for a limited two-week period.
Available exclusively to its Broadway Market location Koya Ko, the Koya & Ko. series will see each chef – all of whom are friends of the restaurant and its head chef and co-founder Shuko Oda – put their twist on Koya’s signature udon and dashi. Reflecting their own unique culinary style and spanning cuisines from around the world in one humble dish, the chefs udon creations will be available as rotating specials at the Hackney restaurant, each for a limited two-week period.
Chefs confirmed for the Koya & Ko. udon series so far include the below, with East London neighbour Max Rocha’s Tea-stained Egg Breakfast Udon kicking off the series in mid-June:
- Max Rocha (Cafe Cecilia) – Tea-stained egg breakfast udon
- Mitshel Ibrahim (Ombra) – Cuttlefish and sweet pea udon
- Benjamin Chapman (Kiln, Smoking Goat) – Geng Gari (yellow chicken curry) udon with pickles and blood orange
- Florence Knight (Sessions Arts Club) – Clam and wild garlic udon with roasted tomatoes
- Sarit Packer & Itamar Srulovich (Honey & Co.) – Pickled cucumber, shredded cabbage, tahini, sesame and chilli udon
- Laura Jackson (Towpath Cafe) – Crispy pancetta lardons and puntarella Udon with poached egg
- Owen Barratt (Monty’s Deli) – Beef rib udon with mustard greens, spring onion and grated ginger
The idea for Koya & Ko. was born from lockdown, when the team sent packages of their Omiyage Udon & Dashi to long-time friends of the restaurant via their delivery service Koya Mail. The team were blown away by their chef friends’ unique, at-home takes on their classic udon and dashi, and wanted to allow guests to share in this joy.
Koya fans can also create their own riffs on the dish at home, with omiyage boxes available to order via Koya Mail from £14 (for 2 servings).
The first Koya, co-founded by John Devitt and Shuko Oda, launched on Soho’s Frith Street in 2010, bringing a traditional Japanese udon bar to the West End. There are now three Koya restaurants – Koya Soho, Koya City and Koya Ko, Hackney – the latter of which launched on Broadway Market in September 2021. Koya has become renowned for its udon and dashi, handmade fresh every day at Koya’s noodle workshop in the City; to this day, Koya remains the only restaurant in the UK to use this traditional method of udon-making. Since its launch, the
restaurant has contributed to the broadening of perceptions of Japanese cuisine in London, and has become synonymous with its menu that combines simple Japanese techniques with produce predominantly sourced from UK suppliers. Koya also launched Koya Mail during lockdown – its online delivery service bringing Omiyage boxes of its fresh udon and dashi to home across the country.