My wife is Japanese, but almost 30 years in London, and has declared this place the most authentic Japanese Noodle bar she has found (food-wise, that is - not sure if any of the staff are actually Japanese). We avoided it for a while, assuming that any place attached to the Marriott in County Hall would be an expensive tourist trap, but that couldn't be further from the truth, thank goodness. Very reasonable prices. We've been there four times in the last three weeks and have been well pleased every time.
Had cause to go here a couple of times recently, while waiting for Baby Ivanhoe to pop out/to take Baby I home.
I can vouch for the katsu curry and the ginger-pork donburi: both pretty good versions of Japanese comfort food staples.
Gyozas were OK (although I prefer them steamed and then shallow-fried, rather than deep-fried as they do at Aji).
Good selection of sakes, which is useful for expectant fathers, as well as for toasting new arrivals.
Situated on the edge of the County Hall complex, the Aji Noodle Bar is right next to Westminster Bridge and the London Eye. Given that prime location, when I went on a Friday evening around 7PM, it was myself and two other random American tourists all alone. So the service was snappy and friendly.
I had the yakisoba prawn with udon noodles. It was good with a decently sized portion. However, too few prawns and too much sesame I thought. I had the green tea, served in a little kettle with just one tea bag. It was a little weak, but for 1 pound for an unlimited amount I can't complain.
The decor is mostly minimal, modern, and with few Japanese themes. The music was a good mix of lounge jazz type tunes.
They also offer a deal for 5-7PM which is any two drinks and any two side dishes for 10 pounds.
Overall I'd say the meal was tasty and a good value, and the menu is very reasonably priced, given the area. I would go back, and try out their ramen next. It's a great place to eat after a show at the Southbank Center.
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