Cocochan is a pan-Asian restaurant located on James Street, near London Selfridges. The street is lined with many restaurants of various cuisines. I have walked along this street number of times but I have hardly notice Cocochan was even there.
When we arrive and step inside to the restaurant, you get a different atmosphere to outside. The restaurant decor is modern and set with low lighting. If the tables was not place with chopsticks I might not had guess they served pan-Asian cuisine.
The food menu was only two pages of A4, containing soups, dim sums, small dishes, sushi, large dishes and rice. Separately, we were provided with a wine menu but no non-alcoholic drinks list was offered. Since it was pan-Asian my preference is to have it with tea, so we asked what tea they had in the restaurant. Apparently they had no green tea and the nearest Asian type of tea was Jasmine tea in which we opted.
Although, you could order food to have for yourself, I feel sharing seems to be a better option. That is what food is all about in parts of Asia – to be able to gather together and share the enjoyment of tasty food.
We ordered a range of dim sums to share which I thought was average. The xo prawn dumpling (£4.50) tasted like prawn dumpling (har gau). I could not taste any XO but maybe the carrot looking shred is the XO that was reference in the menu as “xo” in quotation.
The steamed scallop and prawn siu mai (£4.50) was filled with prawn paste and topped with a scallop.
Out of all the dim sums we ordered, the steamed chillean sea bass and chilli bean dumplings (£5.50) would tick my box. It came shaped like a fish which a good resemble to it being filled with fish paste.
From the small dishes section of the menu, we ordered the chilli squid with shichimi salt (£7.50) which was crispy indeed, but it lack any flavours. I suppose the reason we got a sweet chilli dipping to go with it.
We also tried the spider soft shell crab futo maki (£8.25) in the sushi section. You get 6 in a portion and was beautifully plated, but definitely does not compare to Nobu’s soft crab roll.
The sambal prawns fried rice was the first thing I saw on the menu that I wanted to try. But to my disappointment it was just an average prawn fried rice. It had no flavours and I created some with some soya sauce and the left overs sweet chilli dip that luckily I asked the waitress to leave on the table.
Just like steamed rice it would be more suited to accompany with one of the large dish. But the price tag of £5.50 for a small wooden tub size is fairly expensive, although you are paying for prawns that are expensive.
Cocochan is not a restaurant that is cheap to dine. If it was not for the 50% discount on all food with the taste card, then I would not choose to dine here. In my view, there are other restaurants that serves much better quality dim sums for around the same prices.
38-40 James Street,