Sunday, February 15, 2009


Time really does fly by when you're busy. Thanks to the fellow bloggers who enquired but I am doing fine. I haven't lost my blogging mojo or fallen ill. I've just been really busy with life and hence have fallen a bit behind with my posts.

Well let me start with this post, which was actually from about a month or so ago, or whenever Wagamama first opened in Chadstone. When Wagamama opened in Chadstone, I was jumping for joy. I'm constantly cursing about the lack of good food inside the shopping centre. One can only eat at Nudle (opposite the cinema) so many times and each time complain about it.

One lunch time, a work mate and I went to Wagamama to see what it was all about. I like the airy open feel of the place and the fitout looks nice as well. We were seated at a table and the restaurant was still very empty at this early stage.

Here I am laughing away trying to suck in my fat gut as much as possible in my Yoda Says "Blogging This I Am" t-shirt which I wore just for the occasion. From that point on, I knew the meal wasn't going to go smoothly when the waitress gave us the disclaimer "Because all our meals are freshly made on the premises, your dishes might not come out at exactly the same time". What the? This isn't McDonalds, which in fact make their burgers freshly nowadays too. Which restaurant exactly doesn't make their meals freshly on the premises. I don't see other places having a problem brining out dishes at the same time, especially when you have five chefs in the kitchen.

The waitress came and asked for our drinks orders. We wanted to order sake (ok we shouldn't be drinking during lunch hour but it was a Friday). They didn't have a liquor license yet. We said they should put that temporarily on the menu so people don't have to waste time thinking of a drink only to be told it's not available. So we browse the drinks menu again and get their fruity juice mixture thing.

The actual ordering part was excruciating. Despite having a zillion devices attached to their belt, when we ordered, they kept insisting on scribbling the numbers on the paper place mat. This meant we both had to move our drinks and menus off the table about 3 times. How stupid is this idea. What is the point of writing it on the place mat when they have to punch it into the PDA anyway. I'm sure they could remember how the tables are numbered right.

So we get our meals. My work mate ordered the Teriyaki Beef. It was good, but by no means so mind blowingly good that it cost double as much as our local Japanese shop down the road from work.

I was ultra exciting about my Chilli Beef Ramen as I was expecting something fantastic. I had been reading so much about ramen from Dan and Mellie at Tummy Rumbles that I had been craving ramen for so long. The ramen came and it looked the part. When I started eating though, I wasn't blown away. The soup was not a rich soup made from pork stock and full of flavour. It was instead more like Tom Yum soup and quite light and sour. The beef was very nice, but as a whole thing, it was a bit lacking. Also, they were really tight on the ramen and put in so little. I was really hungry after still and was searching through the bowl for the last pieces of ramen. Again, my noodle was really expensive at about $18. I don't think it was worth that price.

Now for the most excruciating part of the meal, getting the bill. To even ask for the bill too forever. There were so many staff but they just all mulled around at the bar talking to each other. I tried to wave them down so many times. Finally, I literally stuck my hand up and waved furiously at one of the waitress at the bar. Upon requesting the bill, it took, and I timed it, 20 minutes to get it. Lucky we weren't in a rush, but we asked two more waitresses about our bill, and each time they told us it was coming. Finally, when we got it, I gave them my credit card, to which the waitress told me to go pay at the counter. Don't they bring you back the receipt anymore to your table to sign? If she had told me I could pay at the counter earlier, I wouldn't have to sit there for 20 minutes waving.

So overall, there were so teething problems when I first went there. It may be sorted out now, I'm sure. But putting all the staff issues aside, I still wont, and haven't gone back to Wagamama. The price is just too expensive to justify food that isn't that great. It's not worth the price for a quick lunch.

Wagamama on Urbanspoon


  1. First of all - welcome back :)

    What a shame your Waga experience was such a bad one!

    I've been to Wagamama in Canberra, and also the one at QV here in Melbourne, and had fairly positive experiences at both.

    Hopefully Waga Chadstone get their act together. I'll keep my fingers crossed

  2. Thank you Anna.

    The service was just shocking. I'm sure it was due to the place just being open.

    However, I didn't think the food was worth the cost, so even if service improves, I don't know if I'll be rushing back anytime soon.

  3. Hey,

    Ive had some great wagamama here in Melbourne, but every time I am coming down the escalator at Chadstone I get overwhelmed by a mouldy, old chicken smell that makes me feel sick! I dont think it is ever going to be the best place to eat!

  4. Hate to disagree with the above, but Wagamama is ALWAYS bad. I've eaten there several times in Australia and London, and never will again. Overpriced, terrible service, and dreadful food. When so many genuine, genuinely good and Asian restaurants exist all over Australia there is no excuse to settle for Wagamama's plastic facsimile. Don't be fooled, go to a real Asian restaurant. I mean, beef ramen for $18? They've got to be kidding!