MOC Kitchen is a Vietnamese restaurant in the Embankment area of London, in the Arches, to be precise. It’s quite small, and only has one person doing front of house; she was very efficient. In addition to the restaurant side of business, they sell fresh ingredients.
I liked looking at the pictures of Vietnamese scenes on the wall, though the rest of the restaurant is fairly standard. It has a small menu, with some weird pricing – a dish of kangkung cost almost as much as a full main meal.
I went for a seasonal special, the tofu Forbidden Black Rice, in the hope it would be interesting and maybe a bit rich. Sadly it had chewy and tacky black rice, which certainly will be forbidden from my plate in future. The tofu was quite good, though, being spongy in texture and fried with peppers, celery and onions. I would have a different tofu dish here if I come back, as it was only the rice I didn’t enjoy.
Fiancée went for pork braised in fish sauce, which she thought would be different. It tasted a bit more vinegary than fishy to her, but she was content.
We tried the very expensive kangkung to see if it was worth the money. It wasn’t. Not bad, but no reason for it to cost even half that price.
I had to have the iced Vietnamese coffee, which I was expecting would be strong and sweet – due to a huge amount of condensed milk – but which had been toned down a bit for Brits, I guess.
In an area in which there are many chain restaurants (including some I like), it is good to see an independent place which does some nice food (ignoring the black rice). Take a look.
Address: 10 The Arches, Villiers St, London WC2N 6NG