KOKO&ROY. NEW YORK CITY’S DINING IN WARSAW
Koko&Roy is the brainchild of Annah Syta (AKA Koko) – an enthusiastic creative director with an excellent eye for details – and Jonathan Roy – an experienced restaurant owner from New York.
The idea of opening Koko & Roy sparked after several visits to Warsaw – when the owners witnessed the city’s incredibly rapid transformation. Just eight months after opening, Koko&Roy’s dream of contributing to the city’s evolving restaurant scene is already a reality.
Why does Koko&Roy work so well? Its brilliant concept, perhaps.
Unlike in most restaurants in Warsaw, you are welcomed by a full-fledged bar. What is this place? A bar? A restaurant? ‘You don’t need to choose’ – says Jonathan – ’Would you rather wait for your friends alone at a table or at a bar with a nice cocktail in hand?’
It works. And the signature cocktails are stellar!
As you walk in, the exuberant interior strikes you with its uniqueness. There are no metal frame pendant lamps, no exposed bulbs or other hipsterish furniture items. There is no copy paste here.
This little corner of Warsaw is a meticulously crafted place and it reflects Anna’s creative spirit.
The choice of the vintage chairs is a great example. Designed in 1963 by Rajmund Hałas, they are one of the classic representations of Polish design. Each of them was handpicked independently by Annah and Jonathan themselves.
The result of mixing up different interior design styles – both international and Polish – is a New York inspired Seasonal New American restaurant embodying (and celebrating) Warsaw’s energy and edginess.
The food is excellent.
We wouldn’t be writing this review if it wasn’t.
The idea behind the Seasonal New American food is to bring “an advancement and modernization of traditional recipes using refined techniques and execution. It is highly seasonal – using farm fresh ingredients that speak for themselves.”
That is where American merges with Polish. The talented chef, Josh, is a young New Yorker who jumped on the opportunity to travel across half the planet to develop his career here, in Warsaw. Most of the ingredients are locally sourced and super fresh.
An example of Koko&Roy’s attention to the ingredients are the burger buns. For 8 months, they wouldn’t stop trying new recipes and checking Warsaw’s bakeries to find the perfect New York style bun. “The water is different here, it’s difficult to replicate that exact texture and taste” – says Annah. Apparently, they finally managed to get that perfect bun, so don’t hesitate to order the delicious burger if you stop by.
But there is way more to American cuisine than just burgers.
The Menu is varied and surprising, as it should be in a modern GastroPub. Rustic, hearty, with a fresh, modern touch. With so many interesting dishes to choose from, we didn’t feel like opting for the obvious American burger.
In the new seasonal menu (coming soon) you’ll find more fresh (and also vegan) dishes, like this amazing Beef Tartare.
Quite different from other tartare we’ve tried in Poland.
If you feel particularly adventurous, I’d say you try the most curious of all menus’ entries: crunchy fried pig ears and grilled chicken hearts served with homemade garlic and sriracha aioli sauce. I bet you haven’t tried that before. It’s a perfect snack to enjoy with your drink.
For the less daring, the perfect option is the roasted boneless half-chicken served on pommes purée. A unique take on a classic dish. You may be tempted to order something else – “cause this is just chicken” – but you’d miss out. This dish was really something! Crispy skin, tender meat covered by crunchy kale… and of course spiced to perfection. YUM.
The best seller of the menu is the grilled octopus with pepper romesco, garlic, young potatoes, parsley, kalamata olives, and pickled red onion. One of the best Octopus I’ve tried so far (except when I fished my own, nobody beats that one;)).
See you next time
Overall, it was a fantastic experience. Annah and Jonathan made us feel like at home, the food was delicious and the cocktails proudly hold to the standard of other great cocktail bars in Wilcza Street.
We’re dying to try those mouthwatering New York style burgers and other items from the new Spring menu.
We’ll be back.