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Brisbane Devoured: Vapiano

November 07, 2010


Vapiano on Urbanspoon

Vapiano has been reviewed just about to death already but I still plan to add in my 2 cents as this was our first visit.
This restaurant is located in Albert Lane, a very cute extension off Albert St in the city, which contains several interesting and yummy choices for eating and includes one of my favourite shops, The Tea Centre (but that’s another story). 

We headed to Vapiano, keen as mustard, with 2 of our good friends for lunch on a Saturday. Upon entry you are presented with a card each. Instructions were to head to each counter for pasta, pizza or salads as we desired and to swipe the card when ordering. At the end of your meal you head to the front counter to swipe your card again and pay, this is a massive bonus if you have a group of people and need to split the bill. There is also a full bar inside as well in case you fancy an alcoholic beverage. 

L and I decided to order a caprese salad, the Crudo pizza (prosciutto, parmesan and mozzarella on a tomato base) and a garlic pizza (a small garlic bread/pizza base type thing) between us as we were starving. Our friends got the Arrabiata pasta (chilli, tomato and herb sauce) and the Barbeque pollo pizza (chicken breast, BBQ sauce, mozzarella, onion on a tomato base).
Ordering was no problem and there was minimal wait in line even though it was peak lunchtime on a Saturday. Salads and pastas are prepared while you wait, whilst you are given a buzzer to take back to your table for your pizza. Beverages can also be obtained from any of these stations as well as the bar. For the pastas, you can order your sauce with the pasta of your choice (spaghetti, penne etc). There are also condiments and herbs up there (chilli flakes, oil, oregano, basil, thyme) which you can add to your pizza or pasta also.When we ordered our salad, we were also given complementary bread... score!
Back at the table, there is a large centrepiece which contains balsamic vinegar and olive oil dispensers, the usual salt and pepper and a potplant containing a basil plant! Help yourself and pick your own basil to add to your dish as you wish. 

We dug into our caprese salad first. It had been prepared with two large balls of buffalo mozzarella (one each, awesome) and a mixture of cherry tomatoes, red onion and basil. I’d not experienced a caprese salad with cherry tomatoes before and I was a big fan. We added heaps of extra balsamic to the salad to our taste as it was a bit lacking when we first tasted it.

Caprese Salad

 Our pizza buzzer beeped with good timing just as we were polishing off the salad, and L headed to the counter to pick up the garlic pizza/bread and our Crudo pizza. The garlic pizza was not that garlicky at all but was still reasonably tasty. I would probably not order it again however L liked it a lot more than I did.

Garlic bread/pizza

The pizza was delicious and had an awesome crusty thin base. The prosciutto had been placed fresh on top instead of being cooked, fair enough, I didn’t have a problem with this! The only thing that I found wrong with the pizza was the complete lack of tomato sauce on the base. I love heaps of sauce underneath my pizza ingredients but this wasn’t even an average amount, it was in fact, quite scantily spread.

Crudo Pizza

Our friends gave their thumbs up to both their pizza and pasta dishes.

Our friends Barbeque Pollo pizza

The table centrepiece, whilst being lovely with the pot of basil and all, made it impossible to be able to share our food with our friends (even if we had wanted to) and was even quite a hindrance to conversation in fact. 
Apart from these minor gripes, I found our experience enjoyable and will return, but perhaps next time I will ask for extra sauce on my pizza! 


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