Posts Tagged ‘CBD’

Review – Vapiano – Brisbane CBD

Monday, February 7th, 2011

Inviting but don't be fooled. Food is as bland as those pine boards. (Thanks to the lovely people at http://www.ourbrisbane.com/ for the pic - check them out)

I went in with an open mind, but I left with the book closed.

Located in Albert Lane, this restaurant sees a lot of traffic for its fast Italian menu. People talk about it for its unique price point management system, but that has been done to death and wasn’t the reason we finally made it to Vapiano’s. I had conflicting reports on this place, from loving it more than Vespa Pizza to thinking it was like eating at an aeroport.

I ordered the Verdure Pizza (roasted vegetables) and found it lacking. I was very hungry – as we hit Vapiano after the evening movie – so it was after 9pm before we arrived – but in this case, hunger wasn’t sauce enough to get this pizza over the line. Yes the food was fast, but it was nothing special. I didn’t want a meal that was cooked so fast that none of the flavour had a chance to infuse into the food. In fact the zucchini was still hard in places. My friends ordered pasta and while they both ate everything, neither thought it was outstanding. In fact one suggested that the Carbonara she gets from the hole in the wall place near her work was far superior.

Today I had a heap of reading to do, and I really wanted good quality tea to go with the experience – I didn’t bring any with me (foolishly). I had initially planned on the Tea Centre in Albert Lane, but it was very stuffy, even if the fans going. As I left I spied T2 canisters at Vapiano. Even though I had thought never to go there again, I really wanted good quality tea.

Even though there are T2 canisters on display, the tea was Madura. I have nothing against Madura tea, in fact I drink it regularly due to its reduced caffeine count, but if you are suggesting you are serving T2 tea (which is very high quality) but actually serve up a supermarket tea, I am going to have issues with you. When I asked why my tea wasn’t T2 yet in T2 canisters, the bar tender (my guess would be international student) grabbed the canister and disappeared out of sight. He came back with a large pot with actual T2 teabags in it, but obviously this was not the original plan. So heads up if you do go here and order tea.

To me, the tea sums up everything that I felt about Vapiano’s from my previous visit. It tries to be this super fresh and yummy medium to high quality (by the prices) restaurant. But it is really just low end food. Mutton dressed up as lamb.

Pluses:
Convenient location in Albert Lane.
Easy to split the bill.
Food comes fast, very fast.
Lollies when you pay your bill.

Minuses:
Food quality way below the price point.
Food taste way below the price point.
Misrepresentation of product.

I would recommend skipping Vapiano’s. There are far better options in the same or lower price point a short walk away. Even with jumping a taxi to China Town the meals will still be cheaper and better – I recommend Super Bowl.

UPDATE: I met a friend in the city yesterday and we headed to Vapiano because it was just easier. We had the prawn and chilli pasta and the ham and mushroom pizza. SO much better than my last two trips there. Still not great, but average. #twoandahalfupdatedpandas

UPDATE 2: Another friend I went after my last average but doable experience. This time it was back to woeful.  #onepanda

#oneandahalfpandasthatarereallybrownbearswithwhiteandblackpaintonthem

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