Coya was a big hit when it first opened in Mayfair back in 2012; they’ve since expanded globally to Miami and Abu Dhabi and, most recently, they opened a second London site in May 2017. Located in the 24-storey Angel Court development in Bank, Coya certainly looks the part, with dark, enchanting hand-crafted wooden furniture, plenty of original artworks, and Peruvian trinkets dotted around the Pisco lounge bar.
As before, the menus are rooted in traditional Peruvian cuisine but incorporate some modern techniques and Asian influences too. To start we got stuck in to fresh, tasty chicken tacos topped with huancaina (a spicy creamy sauce), toasted corn, and pickled carrots. Slow cooked pulled pork literally melted out from it’s Bao bun and smothered the taste buds in tingling chipotle, salsa and criolla. Giant tiger prawns hung onto skewers that were coated in the Peruvian red paper paste aji panca that was just joyous to gobble up.[URIS id=93004]
The larger main of Costillas de Cerd – that’s 16 Pork back ribs, tamarind glazed and sprinkled with cashew nuts – were delish but fiddly to eat, with cutlery anyway, and a classy place like this doesn’t want to see us getting elbow deep in glaze now does it. The Lubina Chilean sea bass with aji amarillo was a far more elegant choice with the soft meaty flakes providing a very satisfying dish.
Dessert took the form of Mousse de Coco, a coconut mousse with Valrhona chocolate alongside pineapple sorbet which was intensely rich, and flavoursome. The food was super tasty with great flavour combinations and presented like artworks… except the brown table tops don’t make for good Instagram photos do they – oh come on as if that’s not a real factor.
Our only gripe with Coya was the service, which was slightly comical; drinks turning up after the starters have arrived, plates being swapped (for clean ones) half way through main courses, and the table next to us lost all hope and walked out. Would we eat that food again? 100%. Would we subject ourselves to another below average service… sadly, we just don’t have the patience for that. Chance it if you will, the food is worth it, but for us Coya still has something to per-uv.
Coya, The City, London, EC2N 2AT