One of London’s leading Japanese restaurants, Koya, has left Market Halls food court in Victoria. It follows another so-called god-tier restaurant brand, the Markman’s Bunshop, out of the multi-brand space, which opened last autumn. Where Bunshop was replaced by the Instagrammable soft serve brand, Soft Serve Society, Koya is replaced by Cook Daily, King Cook’s vegan fusion and gluten-free restaurant.
Shuko Oda and John Devitt’s Koya, which opened in Market Halls as Koya Ko, a mini spin-off of the restaurant which has enjoyed enormous success on Frith Street in Soho and the Bloomberg Arcade in the City, specialises in udon noodles and thrillingly imaginative small plates which marry British ingredients with Japanese culinary traditions. The original restaurant is an Eater London 38 mainstay.
Devitt confirmed to Eater that Koya Ko departed Market Halls Victoria a fortnight ago, but did not speak about the reasons why.
He said, “After six-months, we’ve decided that it’s time for Koya Ko to leave Market Hall Victoria. It’s been fun trying out our new concept and being part of the Market Hall family. Looking ahead we will be exploring other opportunities.”
Simon Anderson, the co-founder and curator of Market Halls, which also opened a site in Fulham last year and has plans to open just off Oxford Street (the U.K.’s biggest) later this year and in Canary Wharf in 2020, said that it “was always a test for [Koya], [they] did 6 months they were doing okay, just not sure the customer based was right them.”
Cook Daily — the game-changing restaurant from Hackney, which has sought to reframe the white, Western wellness vegan discourse — is Koya’s replacement. Anderson said they’re “already killing it with a totally vegan and gluten free menu.”
For a full list of restaurants at Market Halls Victoria, check out this comprehensive index.