Sapporo Ichiban, Catford

13 Catford Broadway, Catford, SE6 4SP
Tel: 020 8690 8487

BC review to follow, please post your comments and reviews here.

33 comments:

peasoup said...

Ooh, thanks for this. I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone thinks...

Headhunter said...

I'll just move my previous comment here

" haven't been to Sapporo since I lived in Catford back in 02, but although tasty it was hardly authentic Japanese. It's one of those "re branded" Chinese restaurants which does a limited bit of sushi and then lots of fried noodles and spring rolls which are not Japanese."

Not saying it doesn't turn out good food but an authentic Japanese experience, it certainly ain't...

peasoup said...

oh. oh dear.

Headhunter said...

If you want authentic Japanese there are plenty of places in central London. Try Edokko, 50 Red Lion Street, London, WC1R 4PF. It's between Holborn and Chancery Lane Tube stations and is quite well disguised - you have to look out for it. Now that's a very authentic experience but quite expensive...

Tressillian James said...

Reposted comment from previous thread:

"Totally agree HH - suprised to see Sapporo under best loved - the only thing Japanese is the name. If you're thinking of getting a bowl of Sapporo Ramen - or even a bowl of decent ramen it's not to be found here."

Ginza - a similar establishment in Greenwich - is about the best you'll get in area - best thing is to head for central London or out to Ealing.

Headhunter said...

Yeah, Sushi Hiro in Ealing is possibly the best place for sushi in London

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

HH/TJ

How japanese are wagamama?

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

I should re-phrase that and ask how authentic is wagamama compared to a similar noodle bar in Japan?

Headhunter said...

Not at all. "Wagamama" means "spoiled" as in a spoiled child, in Japanese but other than that the food could only be described as pan Asian fusion... Certainly not Japanese.

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

I'll stop claiming I've eaten Japanese then.

Headhunter said...

If by noodle bars you mean ramen places (as in noodles in soup), then Wagamama is not authentic. Ramen places in Japan are usually fairly down at heel, street corner type places along the lines of a local caff in London serving fish and chips, jellied eels and shepherds pie. None of the trendy flashiness of Wagamama. Wagamama is a very western concept basically. The Japanese would consider ramen to be Chinese food anyway, so it's not really Japanese at all.

Anonymous said...

Yeah - Pot Noodle is a type of ramen.

Clare said...

I almost dare not say that I love Sapporo. OK so it may not be authentic Japanese, but the buffet menu on weekday evenings is cheap and cheerful and not being a sushi afficionado, I think it's great.

Just thought I'd offer an alternative view.

Headhunter said...

As I said before, it may well turn out good food. I've been there several times (back in 2002 when it first opened). It's just not authentic - simple as that. It's OK to like it though!

Headhunter said...

Yes - pot noodle is ramen...

psyche9 said...

I love it - have been to places in central London which I think are probably more 'authentic' but not really bothered about that side of things as the food is so good.

Anonymous said...

Its Catford guys come on, I think it is well worth the visit. I have always enjoyed my meals there.
The prawn tempura is tasty and I havent been disapointed with the sushi. The staff are friendly too.

Cant comment on it being authentic or not but its yum!!

Bea said...

If they sell Sapporro Ichiban beer (from the northern island of Hokkaido) then I guess they can claim a stake to the name and selling Japanese products.

However, beer isn't exactly Japanese either (despite having brewed it for over 100 years!)

Anonymous said...

It's a great place, a real oasis in Catford and god knows we need those. I hope the purists who have commented choke on their ramen, who gives a sh*t? Good food, nice staff, nice decor, nice atmosphere, decent prices. There's a brilliant little place in Greenwich called Zin Noodles which does both Chinese and Japanese and do them both well. Who cares that they're on the same premises. Christ.

Tressillian James said...

No - I'm not a purist - I even recommended Ginza in Greenwich which is also run by Chinese. That isn't the problem - why should it be? I just don't think the food is good.

Kake said...

I've only been there once (the RGL page tells me it was last June). I thought the rice was fine but the fish was rather mushy.

toshy said...

I like it, don't eat fish anymore but the sushi was passable when I did. The chilli men veggie noodles are tasty and supercheap. Gets a bit mobbed on a Friday, a waiter had a tantrum last time I was there.

Sally said...

I'm a big fan of Sapporo and I love Japanese food. It's run by chinese staff but they do great bento boxes, their Chicken Kara-age is wonderful. I love their Catford roll which is basically a good prawn tempura roll. I think Headhunter should try a repeat visit. It's not like a Japanese restaurant in the Centre of town but hey - it's in Catford! And it's affordable. And I think it's great - as do a lot of locals as it's always winning awards....

Headhunter said...

Everyone! I repeat for the third time! I did NOT say it was a bad restaurant, say that you shouldn't go there or otherwise disparage the place - please READ! I merely said that it is not an authentic Japanse food experience! If you don't care, fine. It was just an observation. Please stop putting words in my mouth! Jeeeeeez....

b. said...

went there last night - then saw this post - before that had never heard of it - weird.
Found the place quite good actually. I know nothing about Japanese food so cant comment on the 'authenticity' of any dishes but atmosphere was good, staff were more than friendly (in a good way) and the food was very tasty (although my spicey chicken ramen was under seasoned, nothing a bit of soy couldnt sort out).
we were a party of 7 and everyone left happy so I would recommend it.

saishoku shugisha said...

It's really not that inauthentic - it serves a mishmash of food that you can easily get in Japan (with the exception of the deep-fried mashed potato toast: oddly tasty and totally random, but maybe served in a region far from where I lived...?)

Hugh said...

Catford? Do diners get frisked for heat before taking their seats?

Mark said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Headhunter said...

When I was there last they served a limited range of sushi (the usual salmon, tuna, avocado type combos) alongside Chinese staples like chow mein and spring rolls, I never had either of those in Japan. But as I said, I haven't been there for ages so perhaps the menu has changed. It was all perfectly tasty but didn't exactly make me nostalgic for my time in Japan. Anyway, if you're veggie why are you eating there? Isn't it mostly meat and fish?

saishoku shugisha said...

No, it has enough vegi stuff to keep me happy - vegi sushi, yakisoba, yakitofu, kimuchi, etc...westernised to the extent that I can actually get food that isn't de-vegged by having bonito piled on top!

cheapeatlondon said...

Hello peeps - Agree with what everybody else says and unfortunately there aren'm many alternatives in SE London. My Japanese friend recommends these places, but Catford does need more places like this.

Edokko: http://www.london-eating.co.uk/5785.htm (Make sure you get a table upstairs - it feels like you've gone out the back of the changing room in Mr Benn, and into Japan!)

Asakusa: http://www.london-eating.co.uk/2679.htm (Nice cosy feel)

Aki: http://www.london-eating.co.uk/5777.htm

Tosa: http://www.london-eating.co.uk/6251.htm (Excellent yakitori, if you fancy the trek out Chiswick way)

Donzoko: http://www.london-eating.co.uk/3073.htm

Also, if anybody is after a decent bowl of noodles then Vietnamese is a great alternative in SE London; Deptford is awash with Vietnamese eateries and there's a great one on Lee High Road called Banh Cuom.
Hope this helps those Japanophiles!

j4mes said...

I like this restaurant. Cheap, nice food and friendly staff.
Certainly my favourite Catford dining experience.

Anonymous said...

Sapporo Ichiban is great. The person who started this thread by saying it wasn't authentic hasn't been there for a DECADE! (He said he last went in 2002, for god's sake).

I've been with friends who have been to Japan and they seemed to think the food was perfectly fine and certainly not 'inauthentic'.
I really liked it.
Such a shame that this thread comes across as so negative about the place, based on a DECADE-old experience!!!

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