Normally, the word ‘selfish’ would be perceived to have a negative connotation. When we translate this word into Japanese, we see the word ‘wagamama’. This, perhaps, isn’t what you would relate to a contemporary, sleek, clean and successful asian food brand, but when it comes to indulging yourself into delicious fresh food, why would we not want to be a bit selfish?! I’ll take as much gyoza as I can, please.
I adore blogging, it is a lot of work sometimes, but I enjoy putting in the hours for a great final outcome. I’d like to believe that Wagamama saw this when they selected me to sample some of their new menu. It’s safe to say I replied straight away with a big, fat, YES. I was allowed to bring a plus one, and as my mum is probably my blog’s biggest fan (she gets email notifications!), she was the perfect companion. “It’ll just be small taster dishes I’m sure, probably a bit like tapas.” I told her, in the car on the way to the restaurant.
Upon arrival at the Meadowhall branch, we were greeted by cheerful waitress, Amy, (great name) who showed us to our table. We were then looked after by the wonderful Nithima who knew the Wagamama menu like she had designed it herself! When it came to drinks, we were happy to have tap water but she insisted we ordered large fresh juices. I hate to ‘outstay my welcome’ or be greedy (ok, slightly contradicting the intro paragraph – but I was trying to be polite!). We asked Nithima what she recommended, and she suggested the ‘positive’ juice for myself and the ‘clean green’ juice for my mum. We thoroughly enjoyed them when they arrived, they really set the tone for a great dining experience. It was great to drink such a fresh juice which you know had only been made minutes ago.
I have been to Wagamama before, but I wanted to break out of my ‘Chicken Katsu Spell’ – I order it every single time. When it came to ordering starters, I mentioned how much I loved Gyoza and Nithima proposed that we had a plate of duck and a plate of chicken. She also wanted us to have MORE. She raved about the chilli squid and prawns and was adamant we tried it ALL. It was so lovely to have a waitress so passionate and knowledgeable about the menu.
Upon arrival, I didn’t hesitate to head straight to the Gyoza. I was more excited for my mum to try them than for me to eat them! I also tried the chilli squid – something which really isn’t my normal choice, but I could appreciate the dish would be lovely for a squid lover. It offered a beautiful kick of flavour against the savoury gyoza dish. The prawn dish, Ebi Katsu, was a beautiful soft-textured addition.
We were pretty much full to the brim by this point, but we were yet to order mains. Mum opted for the Prawn Samla curry and I asked our waitress what she recommended for me. In the end, I went for the chicken raisukaree. Both of our curries had subtle thai notes to them with flavours such as coconut and lemongrass. I loved the big, chunky vegetables in mine against a smooth, creamy sauce. It was beautifully flavoured and felt like a real treat. I didn’t try any of my mums, but she left an empty bowl which must have meant it was good.
Some of the new additions to the menu included the Pad Thai salad, Grilled Bream Donburi, Sticky Pork Belly and Seared Nuoc Cham Tuna.
By this point, we had no more room left, and we saw our waitress walking over with dessert menus. I’ve never been frightened of a dessert before, but I wondered where the hell in my body I was going to put one. I think my mum was the same. Again, we asked Nithima for her recommendations and she was quick to suggest the white chocolate and ginger cheesecake and the chocolate layer cake. She also really wanted us to enjoy a hot drink alongside, so we both opted for our favourite tea, mint.
You know that extra bit of room you save for pudding? It was definitely needed by the time our puddings arrived! My blood-type at this point was Wagamama.
As a girl with a HUGE sweet tooth – it didn’t take me long to demolish my chocolate cake, which was layered with chocolatey and hazelnut goodness and served alongside ice cream. Me and mum tried each others and the cheesecake was also incredible. After sipping our tea and looking after our food-babys, We both waddled out the restaurant absolutely stuffed – Wagamama KNOW how to look after its customers well.
I have always been a huge fan of Wagamama and really consider an outing to the restaurant as a real treat. To have been looked after so well left me feeling like royalty. It was also amazing to be able to spoil my mum too. I cannot thank Wagamama enough for having us and gifting us this complimentary experience. The service was faultless and experience was unforgettable. It was also a great way to celebrate the fact I will be graduating with a first class degree! I found this out the night before.
So, if you’re up for trying something new, check out the menu here. If you’re a fan of the classic dishes, like the chicken ramen, some of these have been ‘refreshed’ and given a revamp.
Oh, and for those of you wondering. I was still full by tea time!
**This post has not been sponsored. The meal was gifted to me and a plus one.