Tucked away in north London, this relative newcomer offers surprisingly good sushi at competitive prices. Come hungry and enjoy.
The restaurant is very small and the minimal décor echoes the traditional Japanese sushi bar. However, despite its name, there is no conveyor belt or sushi bar to sit at. In fact, its main asset is an all-you-can-eat sushi and tempura menu.
Tables are very well spaced, but the venue isn't particularly bright or airy, the décor is minimal (with a slightly tacky twist thanks to red lanterns and tiny oriental-inspired wall-frames) and it lacks the kind of atmosphere you might want for an intimate dinner. However, this is (mostly) an all-you-can-eat restaurant, so cosy daters and love birds are conspicuous only by their absence. Service can be a bit slow when it gets busy but both the owner and the waitress are friendly and smiley as they do their best to provide good service.
The a la carte offering has a lovely selection of sushi and bento boxes, some of which are really good value, but most diners go for the all-you-can-eat offer. For £15 per person, you can enjoy unlimited sushi (nigiri and maki rolls), some enjoyable starters and hot dishes such as soba noodles and tempura. A positive note is that portions aren't small as can often be the case in this kind of establishment, and you can indulge across a reasonably wide selection of rolls and tempuras. There is a time limit of 1.5 hours and you can order just three items at a time, and whilst it certainly isn't gourmet, it's not bad at all; the sushi is made to order and the little things are done well, such as the tempura batter, which is nice and crisp.
Koi Sushi offers the usual suspects you would find in a Japanese restaurant, so look for hot and chilled green tea, plenty of sake and Asahi beers by the bottle. Unfortunately, it really falls short on its wine selection, just a very basic 'choice' of either red or white wine.
The Last Word
Considering that there really aren't that many all-you-can-eat places in this side of town, Koi Sushi and Noodle Bar is a pretty decent find for all those that fancy a big sushi eat and who don't mind if the atmosphere and setting is a little lacking.