Chocolate ramen! Valentine’s Day limited menu – Mensho Tokyo, Korakuen


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Nothing says romance like chocolate noodles, right?

Mensho Tokyo is serving up chocolate ramen in honour of Valentine’s Day. For just 800 yen, you can get yourself a bowl of noodles with a generous smattering of chocolate drops on top! Continue reading

It’s Chocolate Noodle time! Valentine’s Day Chocolate Tsukemen at Menya Musashi

Is that some chocolate in my noodles?

Is that some chocolate in my noodles?

Yes, that is a piece of chocolate sitting casually nestled among some noodles and vegetables. Popular ramen restaurant Menya Musashi in Shinjuku may be famed for its huge chunks of juicy kakuni pork but it’s not opposed to branching out for a special occasion. Continue reading

Sarabeth’s Valentine’s Day Chocolate Explosion



Sadly, one thing that Japan does not do very well is chocolate. If you lust over gooey, stodgy brownies that are almost molten in the middle, and eating one leaves you in a near-orgasmic coma for an hour or two, then you’re probably going to be dissatisfied by the average cocoa offering over here. (Of course, everything can be obtained for a price and if you’re prepared to seek it out!)

An abundance of chocolate can be found, however, just before Valentine’s Day. This is a celebration in which, conversely to Western practices, women give chocolate to men. Given that when I have visited any dessert or chocolate cafés/shops, they are almost always exclusively populated by females, I wonder if this practice acts as a form of cultural legitimation that permits men to enjoy chocolate at least once a year.

They say ‘when in Rome, do as the Romans do’. Well, I can tell you straight away that there is no way in hell (or the entire universe) that I’m giving chocolate away. Oh no, it’s going to go gliding down my greedy gobbling throat. With emphasis on the glugging noises. Continue reading

Choccywoccydoodah, off Carnaby Street

BrownieHow many of you will be giving or given chocolate this Valentine’s Day? It’s a pretty standard gift that ensures that February 14th is sickly sweet in more ways than one. Not that there’s anything wrong with chocolate, of course. Just why not give your special someone a little bit more of an imaginative, full-on chocolate experience? You know, a bit of a cocoa thingamabob? Or a sugary whatsit?  Or maybe, some… Choccywoccydoodah?

Yes, Choccywoccydoodah does exist and it will excite even the most chocolate-apathetic among us. Hailing from Brighton, they have now set up a shop and café just off London’s Carnaby Street.

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Imagine what would happen if Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory got it on with a fine lady’s boudoir. You get extravagance, flamboyance, weirdness and wackiness all rolled into one. In fact, entering Choccywoccydoodah for the first time will visually overwhelm you. There is too much to take in – it’s an Aladdin’s Cave of all things yummy.

Cartoonish models of bunny girls are interspersed with giant marshmallow lollies, strawberry chocolates, hearts and flowers. It’s so over-the-top and playful that I defy you not to grin and squeal, and start examining all the treasures.

Up the stairs, you will find a small café split on two levels. The centrepiece is a table covered with cakes that are just as extravagant as the décor. At Choccywoccydoodah, the request of ‘just a small slice, please’ is seriously frowned upon. At Choccywoccydoodah, size is everything.

Now that you’ve impressed your loved one with such opulent and ogle-worthy offerings, take a table and order the hot chocolate (£3.50). This is one of London’s best – you can choose from milk, dark or white and it comes with marshmallows, plenty of cream and a chocolate straw. Also on the menu are milkshakes, chocolate fondue and the dangerously sumptuous Choccywoccydoodah sundae.

Hello hot chocolate
There is enough here for your love affair to weather several repeat visit – and it may also be a teeny-weeny bit addictive. A word of caution: the café does get busy so allow yourself plenty of time as you may have to queue. Just remember that all good and pleasurable things are worth waiting for.

So if you really want to impress your loved one for Valentine’s Day, off you trot to Carnaby Street. Choccywoccydoodah will give you all the choccy woccy you need… please save the doodah for later 😉

Where: 30-32 Fouberts Place, off Carnaby St, London,W1F 7PS
When: Monday – Saturday 10am – 6pm; Sunday 12pm – 5pm

Article originally published on, which you check out for loads more London food news.


Worst Date Ever (London on the Inside competition)

London on the Inside are running a competition in association with Costa Bingo to win tickets to The View from The Shard. All they want is a bad date story. Well, that’s easy enough…

I don’t do dating. I’ve had three strikes at it – enough to know that it’ll end badly. Like that time I slammed a door in a guy’s face when he tried to kiss me. (I was too shy to say: “Actually, I’m really sorry, but I just don’t fancy you.”) I now firmly believe in what I term the “friendship-evolution” method.

The worst date I’ve ever been on was with a guy I barely knew.  He called me up and was evidently nervous.

“Hi Phoebe, h- h- how-er….” he stuttered.

“I’m fine, thank you. How are you?” I replied quickly, wanting to smooth over his embarrassment. I was a little taken aback, but shyness can be endearing, right?

He said he had free tickets to see a movie and would I like to go? Well, I didn’t know him and I didn’t fancy him, but there was always a chance that something might develop. He might have a dazzling personality and provide thrilling flirtatious conversation.

My hopes were cut short, however, because he was too nervous to organise meeting me for a drink beforehand. We met 2 minutes before the film and hurried into the cinema. We spoke for 5 minutes during the adverts, watched the film and then began the 10 minute walk back. There was zero rapport and zero time to strike up any rapport. It was hopeless and I was annoyed. If attraction were rated on a scale from one to ten, I was hovering around two.

We reached the street where our routes home separated. He paused and there was a very awkward silence. It was so awkward that I was trying very hard not to squirm.

Bravely, I thought it was time to acknowledge things.

“Well, this is awkward,” I ventured. I felt sorry for him – always a bad sign – and this made me generous. I intended to steer him down the path of  “Maybe we should meet for coffee so we can get to know each other better.”

He, however, had other ideas. He looked directly at me.

“Shall we just kiss now and get it out the way?”

My face must have said it all. I couldn’t contain my horror at the proposal. I tried to recover my facial muscles but it was too late.

He steeled himself. “Perhaps not then,” he muttered.

That was the last time I dated.

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