Showing posts with label fast casual. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fast casual. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Wagamama Seaport (Boston, MA)

Wagamama is a chain of restaurants serving Asian food - primarily Japanese - which started in UK. I wasn't familiar until I moved to Boston 3 years ago, and I actually only tried it for the first time recently. Wagamama had opened a new location in the Boston Seaport district and invited some bloggers and instagrammers to try them out.

We started with a plate of Chili squid (crispy fried squid, shichimi, chili cilantro dipping sauce, $9)
Wagamama
For calamari lovers, this squid dish is a great variation. It's crispy but tasted light and spiced just right. I couldn't start eating them.

We also had some dumplings, both steamed and fried. Our favorite was the fried duck gyoza ($8)
Wagamama

The drinks at Wagamama are better than I would've expected from a chain restaurant. While a lot of them tended on the sweet and fruity side, they're not overly sweet and fairly well balanced. What I like most is the fact that they use spirits from Asia as much as possible.

For example, the Wagamama Mai Tai is made with Tanduay rum which is from the Philippines. They also use Iwai Whisky from Japan
Wagamama

Monday, February 15, 2016

Picnic LA: Fast Casual with a Fine Dining Flair (Culver City, CA)

Culver City residents and workers have a great new lunch spot. Picnic LA is a fast casual, produce-driven spot that's perfect for a quick lunch, takeaway orders, and now even deliveries. Opened by trio Brad Zions, Noah Ellis (who formerly worked in the Red Medicine kitchen), and Eliot Silver, Picnic LA is slinging healthy, vegetable-heavy menu that features produce and proteins from local farms and ranches.

Walking in, you'll see today's selections of entrees, salads, and more displayed on the counter

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Each item can be purchased individually, or you can get a combo. A combination of any entree with any 2 salads will be $14.50, $17.50 for entree and 3 salads, or get 3 salads with no entree for $12.
Picnic LA
The bread they use come from Lodge Bread Co, a new darling in the LA bread world, which is also made in the Culver City area.

Picnic LA

As I mentioned, the items here are produce-driven so there are a lot of vegetable items featuring local farm products like in this Citrus and fennel salad
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Friday, April 17, 2015

Fast Casual Lebanese at Urban Garden (Los Angeles, CA)

George Abou-Daoud may be famous for his previous enterprises along the lines of gastropub The Bowery or Delancey, but he's started to bring his Middle Eastern heritage into the LA dining scene.

His latest venture is Urban Garden, a fast casual Lebanese spot in Mid-city that boasts free range chicken shawarma, organic chickpeas in the falafel, and more.

As you'd expect from a Lebanse spot, they have hummus, falafel, shawarma, etc.
They have three types of hummus: Traditional hummus, spicy hummus (with spicy pickled peppers), garlic hummus (with thyme roasted garlic). On top of that you can also get a lebneh made with Mediterranean yogurt, topped with French feta cheease and za'atar. There's also babaganoush with sumac.

Urban Garden
Pictured on the wall is Abou-Daoud's mother, who inspired most of the recipes (the baklava with rosewater syrup served here is his mother's recipe). These are the food that Abou-Daoud grew up with, but he's added his own touches.
Urban Garden

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