Wednesday, 26 January 2011

[Restaurant - "Japanese"] Shame on Somebody's Mama; Wagamama of Soho

Location - Soho, London [UK]

Rank, Skank and Dank. An application of these words was unfortunately true for most aspects of eating at the aforementioned.

Ok, perhaps a bit harsh, not that the 1 person that reads this blog - me - will complain. I would perhaps replace "Rank" with "Blank" for the food. Unfortunately, in a seemingly reoccurring nightmare/twist of fate [What a twist!], this is the second time where a much enthused rendezvous of face to plate interaction were quickly destroyed by the simple lack of calling ahead. Despite Soho being as elegant as Paris Hilton, though perhaps not as skank, Bocca di Lupo was fully booked. LAME. Though, this was not the first tinge of disappointment to be met with - Yuautcha was also similarly plump with bookings, and the rest were, well, Soho Skank, that and I could not remember of any restaurants to note in the Soho district, as I largely avoided it. For being Skank.

Skanketty skank.

So, as a literal last resort, especially as there were musings of eating [I use the term loosely] at Pizza Express, or the slightly commercialised food served at Chiquito, we had settled for Wagamama as it was quick food. Yay. I probably sound/read a bit pretentious in my deriding of chain restaurants, but Wagamama is so blatently a Student-appealing outlet, and students have no taste. I am no longer a student perse', so I can safely say that, hah!

Anyway, I obviously did not have any expectations. Especially so as we walked through the door. Then below the ground surface...

~ Starter ~
- Miso Soup & Japanese Pickles

I do quip on about my age occasionally, but I have met my match - the pickles were obviously kept on a counter since around the same time I was born. Disgusting - dry, funky tasting, not particularly "pickled" either. The Miso Soup, well, it's just miso, and it was as uneventful as always, no special note here.

- Edamame with Chilli & Garlic

Dead Sea edamame would have been more appropriate as they seem to have been seasoned therein. I was obviously a noob and was eating them whole, wondering why I dislocated my jaw on chewing 349783294723894 times per bean pod, however, that didn't disguise the salt. Nothing could. Not even the US Government. And they hid the fact that the "Moon Landing" occurred in a TV Studio. So much salt. I think I am now a salt lick.

~ Main Course ~
- Yaki Udon

To give some respite to this blatently well enjoyed meal, I will muster up all the positive thinking and hippy zen rubbish ever and say of this meal: Blandness is a Virtue. Ta-dah! Yeah, somehow

" teppan-fried udon noodles in curry oil with chicken,
prawns, chikuwa, egg, beansprouts, leeks, mushrooms
and peppers. garnished with fried shallots, pickled
ginger and sesame seeds"

Translates into "dry, flavourless chicken, with crunchy somethings. That is all". I was hoping at least to have some wheaty, carbohydrate fix with the worm-like noodles, but to no avail. Beyond the occasional sharp acidity of the pickled ginger, there was no actual discernible flavour prominent in this dish. *Sigh*

~ Drinks ~
- Carrot Juice with Ginger

Hat-trick of despair! Nah, to be honest, if they managed to screw up a glass of juice, I would have cried. For their denial of my carrot intake. The juice was bland, the ginger subtle, but it was still freshly made. I feel dirty [not as dirty as the venue], that sounds like a compliment.


Overall I LOVED the place!

And tonguing a fire ant's nest. Yeah. Desperate measures, so I cannot really expect much, however, I have never been to a Wagamama's so lacking in perceptive hygiene, with food so bland and obviously old, ever. A Wagamama's so in fitting with its surroundings in essence. A probably biased review, but it is as I experienced it. And I hope that will be an isolated incident.

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