Last weekend, we decided to go shoe shopping for Mr. A at the City Center Mall (Bahrain). To our huge disappointment, we failed to find a pair for him that he would absolutely love. Nevertheless, that didn’t curb our hunger from taking us to Vapiano. A couple of years ago, when I was doing my Masters in Law from Georgetown, DC, I used to often eat at Vapiano, China Town.
Finding a Vapiano outlet in Bahrain brought back all the memories of my favorite Roasted Tomato & Garlic pizza, with a generous sprinkle of parmesan cheese and chilli flakes. Sadly, this is not on the menu in Bahrain.
Vapiano is situated on the first floor of city center close to Gate 6. It could be a favorite hang out location for people from a wide age group, from kids to seniors. We were about to have an early lunch on a Saturday; the restaurant had a few patrons, it wasn’t difficult to get a table.
As you step into Vapiano, you are welcomed by the courteous staff and you are handed over a card which records your order that you place at the cooking station. The ambience in Vapiano is great. It feels very roomy as it is an open restaurant with no walls around and at the same time pretty cozy due to the dim table lights. No matter where you sit, you will get a good view of the live cooking counters, from where you can watch your food being cooked. This is mostly a self-service restaurant.
You can head to the stations to place you order. Post entering the order, you are handed a vibrating device which you can carry over to your table. This Pager-like device vibrates when your order is ready and then you need to walk over to the counter to collect your meal.
The menu offers a wide range of Italian food ranging from anti pasti to soups & salads to risotto to pizzas. We ordered for a Diavolo Pizza at the pizza station and a Ravioli Con Carne at the pasta station. Mr. A then went to the bar counter to get us a lemon and mint drink.
Diavolo Pizza is a pepperoni salami pizza with fresh ingredients like pepperoni salami, fresh bell peppers, red onions on home-made tomato sauce and mozzarella; it was amazing. The thin crust pizza took us back to Italy where we had pizzas that tasted similar but not as heavy.
The Ravioli Con Carne is basically a home-made ravioli filled with traditional home-made beef Bolognese in tomato sauce. The food was well-plated and looked appetizing. I am not so sure how fresh the Ravioli was; the tomato sauce tasted more like a canned sauce. The tomato sauce in this dish is pretty overpowering.
This has been one of our many visits to Vapiano. The pizzas and pastas are not out-of-the-world but are definitely far better than what most fast food outlets here dish out.
My overall experience was very good. We were happy with our pizza, but slightly disappointed with the Ravioli. Vapiano is a restaurant that I would definitely return to, especially for their pizzas and salads. I look forward to trying their fresh salads on my next visit.