Today I have had the absolutely refreshing pleasure of experiencing the highest quality ‘fast food’ that I have ever tasted! I happened to be working around London Bridge and as my colleague and I were walking to our meeting she caught site of a Vapiano. I had never heard of the restaurant before, but the morning’s conversation seemed gripped by Vapianos and how amazing she thought it was. It seemed our lunch venue had been decided on!
On entering the restaurant we were given a chip card as we were directed to order from an L shaped self-service food station offering fresh made-to-order hand tossed pizza, pasta or salad. I decided I fancied Pasta “Gruppo A – Pesto” (£6.75). From the outside you may be deceived into thinking that you are entering a very expensive restaurant, but this is not the case. The prices are really reasonable and the best part is, that like its exterior appearance, the menu selection, décor, furniture, toilets and staff are all top notch! At the pasta station a very friendly lady asked me for my preferred pasta type, if I wanted garlic, chili and cheese and how much of each I would like. She then boiled the pasta, fried the chosen ingredients and created my individual dish as I waited. Within a few minutes I had a very generous bowl of pasta, garnished with basil, parmesan and a baby tomato. To my delight the pesto was fresh, homemade and authentic. I have eaten pesto from Genova in Northern Italy where it was created and this was on par!
So I have done some research. Vapiano describes itself as a “fast casual restaurant with a twist”. This fresh concept has been implemented in more that 70 worldwide locations with another 100 in development in the United States, Europe and the Middle East – please make more in London! Whenever I am out and about and in need of some fast, tasty, healthy, yummy lunch, I will be on the look out for a Vapiano! It’s name made me giggle too as Vapiano literally translates as ‘go slowly’ – maybe the Italians are trying to tell us Brits to enjoy a proper lunch break and I can only but endorse proper lunch breaks!