The Halal: I couldn’t believe it but all the poultry and meat is halal! The restaurant does serve alcohol and they have since informed me that some of their dishes also contain alcohol so please ask before ordering. There are no pork products served on the menu.
The Place: You can find Cocochan a stones throw away from Selfridges on James street. It’s a contemporary pan-Asian restaurant serving food from Thailand, China, Japan, Vietnam and Malaysia. The interior is modern with bold colours and sleek lines.
The Food: Even though we ordered from the set menu, there was a large selection of starters and main courses to choose from. We ended up ordering our own starters then sharing out the mains.
I ordered the vegetable tempura which was served with a sesame ponzu. The vegetables were cooked in a light batter and were perfectly crispy.
The mixed seafood gyoza was also very nice as was the salmon and avacado maki.
We ordered Wok tossed chicken with szechuan spices- it was tasty and the chicken was tender but I was expecting the dish to be a lot spicer!
We ordered steamed sea bass with black bean and baby bok choi. The presentation of the fish was lovely but the flavours were disappointing. The fish was cooked well but overall the taste was very bland.
Next up was the red duck curry. It is always a treat to have halal duck! The red curry was rich and had a depth of coconut, ginger and chilli flavours. It’s difficult to present curry in a sophisticated way but the vegetable crisps served on top made the bowl look very impressive.
The Verdict: Excellent starters and drinks! Mains were quite disappointing apart from the duck which was very good. I felt that the seasoning was generally lacking and the flavour combinations were very ordinary. Saying that, Cocochan was reasonable value for money but unfortunately I don’t think I’ll be rushing back.