If you have never been to Wagamama before here's a little background information:The wagamama story began in 1992 when their first restaurant opened in London’s Bloomsbury. inspired by traditional Japanese ramen bars and Asian flavours. today, wagamama is an award-winning series of restaurants, spanning 17 countries with over 99 restaurants in the UK alone. The cook super fresh food and (in my opinion) offer a modern dining experience at an affordable price.
Enough about the company, lets take a look at the food!
I got to sample a mixture of curry, noodle and side dishes along with some drinks and a dessert. First up and my favourite of the evening was:
Grilled Duck Ramen
This dish was my ideal Wagamama dish. I normally opt for the chilli chicken ramen as I like a bit of a kick but the duck was really succulent so I know what I will be eating next time I visit the restaurant. It's noodles in a vegetable soup topped with tender boneless duck leg and pea shoots. Garnished with coriander,
chillies, spring onions and a citrus ponzu sauce. YUM!
This contained noodles in a vegetable soup with thai basil topped with a variety of exotic mushrooms; including oyster, chestnut and shiitake with asparagus. Garnished with silken tofu and a chilli, garlic, sesame and soy sauce. My ramen contained six different types of mushrooms and was very hearty, a great winter warmer. If I hadn't tasted the duck ramen before this I would have liked it more but I missed the chilli from the previous dish.
Me looking a little merry after a few glasses of wine...
Mahi Mahi Curry
I loved this new fish dish which contained grilled mahi mahi (Hawiian/Pacific fish) in a spicy curry sauce with sweet potato, red and green peppers and mushrooms. Served with rice and garnished with coriander cress. I thought all the flavours worked well together and I loved the used of mahi mahi which isn't really used much here in the UK despite being quite delicate and almost sweet.
This was a simple combination of long steamed broccoli teamed with pak choi, stir fried with plenty of garlic and soy sauce which would make a great side order to any dish.
Another new side dish was the pulled pork gyoza The steamed dumplings are filled with slow cooked pulled pork, served with spiced black vinegar and ginger sauce. My guest for the evening (my boyfriend) loved this dish but for around £5 I would share this side dish to keep costs down.
Fans of Wagamama and the kare lomen will be thrilled with this dish’s return to the wagamama menu. There was a bit of a campaign to get this re-added to the menu after it was removed to make way for new dishes and I can see why. Piled high with either grilled chicken or prawns, the kare lomen is full of flavour. The creamy coconut and lemon grass soup is mixed with a bowlful of ramen noodles, bean sprouts, cucumber and garnished with coriander and lime
There really was sooo much food but I got to sample a few drinks to help wash it down. First up was the Root Juice which contained beetroot, carrot and orange juice. This was a little earthy for my tastes and I would have preferred this with a little more fruit juice or maybe some ginger and lime but if you are a fan of vegetable juices the flavours in this would work well with all the meals I sampled.
Wagamama is also exclusively introducing iki beer to their menu, the only restaurant in the UK to offer this. The beer is contains a green tea and yuzu mix, I really enjoyed this and it tasted like a refreshing Dutch beer.
Half Moon Pancakes
There's always room for dessert right? I loved the hot pancaked filled with with a date and orange sauce accompanied with a scoop of cinnamon ice-cream which certainly gave it a festive flair.
I had a lovely evening and nearly needed to be wheeled out of the restaurant by the end after sampling so many dishes. I don't think I would make a very good food blogger as I can't pace myself and eating out all the time would spell disaster for my waistline ;)
The new menu is launched across the UK today (22nd October) and if you want to give it a try you can find your nearest restaurant here.