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Roka (Bar, Restaurant)

Picture of Roka in Fitzrovia, London

37 Charlotte Street, Fitzrovia, London, W1T 1RR
Cuisine: Japanese
Tel: 020 7580 6464 | Email to Roka | Transport: Goodge Street | Write review

Roka Review

Shochu Lounge exceeds all expectations, both as a bar and a dining venue. Part of Roka restaurant, you’ll find it in its basement – and what a find it is. Taking its name from the ancient Japanese spirit (which is not a million miles away from vodka), Shochu Lounge offers a drinking and eating experience like no other.

Shochu cocktails are the house speciality and include the Tanuki Peach, the Lavender and Honey Goblet and the Hallo Kitty punch. We started off with a couple of Plum Plums and liked them so much, we stayed on those all night. Containing plum shochu, plum vodka and a Japanese flavoured water called tzu, the drink is nothing short of bliss. Fellow imbibers assured us that every shochu cocktail is just as special. Shochu Lounge also does a great line in whisky, rum and martini-based cocktails and offers a fine selection of wines and bottled beers.

Food is ordered straight from the Roka menu. Same bill of fare, but the dining experiences are completely different. Upstairs, it’s all big windows and streamlined seating; down below patrons savour their victuals at the bar or low tables, surrounded by cushions and dimmed lighting. As for the menu, well, you’re spoilt for choice. We asked our excellent waitress to recommend dishes and were delighted with the results.

We feasted on rock shrimp and napa cabbage in garlic and chilli (baechu kim chi), swiftly followed by softshell crab (age watari gani). After which, the three-sashimi selection was extremely refreshing. Next, and hot off the traditional robata grill, was the sensational sea bream fillet with ryatei miso and red onion (taio miso-yaki), complemented by plates of chilli okra and sweet soy asparagus. Stuffed to the gills, we faced our final challenge: the kama meshi, a rice hotpot packed with Japanese mushrooms and lots of flavour. Delicious.

If lip-smackingly good cocktails and luscious, scrumptious Japanese food are your idea of a great night out, do not delay in making Shochu Lounge your next port of call. You couldn’t do better for service, style or atmosphere either.
...read more

Fiona Lawrie

Customer Reviews for Roka

Average (based on 13 votes): 13 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of Roka.

“Great decor and pleasant cocktails were spoiled by the unbelievably rude and arrogant staff. One to miss, unless you enojoy being treated like rubbish.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
geraint, richmond (4 years 6 months 9 days ago)

“What can I say, Roka is amazing. The food is second to none - dreamy, melt in your mouth fish, loved the big windows on the corner and the big woonden benches surrounding the open kitchen. The service was impeccable, we're talking about waiters who actually know what they are talking about and who know the correct way to serve at a table, attentive yet discreet. Presentation of the food was great, carved ice chunks to hold the sashimi and the wine list was extensive and of course a wine recommended for each dish. Roka is definitely one of the best Japanese restaurants I have ever eaten at and would go back again. If you're looking to impress - choose Roka.”
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Emma, Battersea (5 years 1 months 12 days ago)

“Believe the pictures, this is a really picturesque bar. Everything is always perfect. These guys define the meaning of standards. The cocktails are meticulously mixed, the presentation of the food always stunning. and everything always runs smoothly when I come here. I'm sure you've guessed I'm a regular, and will continue to be so.”
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Nicole Tim, london (6 years 16 days ago)

Show all user reviews for Roka

“This place has it all, great food, great cocktails, trendy people and atmosphere, atmosphere, atmosphere. If you like trendy places this is the place to be. Everything is amazing here you definitely have to see it to believe it.”
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Judy Janice, london (6 years 20 days ago)

“I came here for my birthday two weeks ago and had a ball. We had a corner table and had the most spectacular japanese meal, our waitress was japanese as well and made a great job of explaining the food and the concept. I loved it and am begging my boyfriend to take me back!”
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Samantha Schnyder, london (6 years 23 days ago)

“Some of my girlfriends and I came here for some drinks and ended up sitting on the central table for dinner, which was absolutley devine. If you've never been there before you'll see they have this huge iceblock on the table, and when they need to use the ice the bartenders politley warn you that they are about to saw the ice and that you should take care not to get wet. They then lay a napkin on the table and pull out this massive SAW!!! They then abruptly saw a piece off the block in about 30seconds and quickly clean up the table and chizzle the ice into a piece big enough for a galss! Drinks and a show indeed!! Besides that the environment is great, the music compliments it well. The drinks and food are mouth-watering and the service outstanding.”
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Kelly Spring, london (6 years 23 days ago)

“The bar is a little dark, but that just makes a really intimate setting. The service was really friendly and welcoming, the food fantastic. The wine list is really good. All in all I liked it a lot and will probably go back.”
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Lewellyn Corget, london (6 years 24 days ago)

“Wow, dinner and a show! Sitting at the "Shochu Table" right infront of the ice block, the most unique feature in any bar in London, is by far the best seat in the house. When they do saw the ice you may want to watch out for the "impending snow". The atmosphere here is just great.”
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Ross Tunicker, london (6 years 29 days ago)

“After reading the review about the ice block I decided to go check it out for myself. It really is abit of a show. Very different indeed, they serve the ice with a spirit called shochu, which the infuse with different flavours, the jasmin is delightful. This lounge is really trendy and fun, but very busy.”
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Tony, London (6 years 1 months ago)

“The ice block they have in this bar is the coolest thing since the saw they saw it with! To see the bartenders saw away at the ice with this huge traditional Japanese saw was amazing! They then chizzle the ice into manageable blocks with really good precision (I can't imagine most people doing this in the dark), and then use it for cocktails! If you want a drinking hole with a twist this is the palce for you! Awesome DJ, a show from the bartenders, the perfect Thursday night out. Great going guys!”
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Kenneth Lewis, london (6 years 1 months ago)

“I took some friends from abroad here for drinks, and we were not disapointed!! The basement bar was relativley empty at first, but soon filled up, and was pumping with beautiful people, cool music and a really good vibe. We managed to get a table for dinner (luckily they had 1 opening) and had some fantastic cocktails, the waitress was very pleasant, knew exactly what we wanted (I don't know too much about japanese cuisine), but her selection was amazing. My guests were really impressed, and when the bartender started sawing away at the massive block of ice the excitment levels hit the roof. I loved the place, a pity it's underground, but then again all good things are hard to find.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Johan Smit, London (6 years 1 months 6 days ago)

“The food here is certainly good. But like a growing number of restaurant they have a policy where they want to kick you out after a while and get some new punters in. Unlike a lot of restaurants where it is two and a half hours – at Shochu it only two hours. Which means if you have forked out for their seven course tasting menu – which they are not always that prompt in bringing out to you – you risk being asked to leave before you have finished. I tried to book at 9pm in order to avoid this but was told that they still booked people until eleven pm! Unbelievable. When you are spending upwards of £100.00 per head you’d think you were treated better than you would be at McDonald’s, but unfortunately at Shochu – that just isn’t the case.”
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Alex Watt, London (6 years 7 months 28 days ago)

“Shochu is a stylish lounge bar beneath the popular Japanese restaurant, Roka. Specialities include inventive cocktails made using fruit liqueurs based on the distilled Japanese spirit which gives Shochu its name.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Helen, London (9 years 26 days ago)

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Additional Information

  • Cuisine Type: Japanese
  • Dress Code: Not Specified
  • Group: Roka

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