Thursday, 16 October 2014

Wagaya - Fortitude Valley

Lately (as always), I found myself craving Japanese food. Upon telling my food buddy this, they suggested that we go to Wagaya for lunch. Being located upstairs in the TCB centre, one wouldnt normally notice the restaurant, or be compelled to enter without actually looking for it. The fact it has survived for this long in such a concealed place gives a good indication about how popular this place is 。^‿^。.

The one thing that sets Wagaya apart from other restaurants, is that every table has a touch screen computer where you order your meal. Aside from being novel, it gives you ample time to decide what you would like, without having to wait on waiters to take your order. I also particularly like how they have a running balance that you can check on as you order ( ⋂‿⋂’).

Aside from ordering, you can also track the progress of your meal, which is a handy feature when you're very very hungry (~ ̄▽ ̄)~.

The first thing we ordered was Salmon Sashimi. The fish was relatively fresh, and the cuts were rather thick. Was a great start to the meal.

My favourite thing at Wagaya has got to be its hand rolls. For $3.80 a piece, this could be the cheapest hand rolls in Brisbane. As you can see in the pictures, we got quite a few Soft Shell Crab hand rolls. As a traditionalist, I would have preferred them without the sweet chili sauce, nevertheless, they were enjoyable. My particular favourite is the salmon hand roll. The rice was nicely seasoned, and you can see the rice to filling ratio is very very good.

For mains, one of us ordered a Pork Katsu Bento. It was served with a large variety of sides as well as miso soup.  The miso soup in Wagaya is usually served with a variety of things, such as fish, chicken, and assorted vegetables. As a personal preference, I prefer my miso soup plain. An interesting point I noted was that there was spaghetti included as a side in the bento. Other than that, the portions are generous and worth getting.

This is Salmon Chirashi Sushi. What is Chirashi you ask? ちらし寿司 translates to mean 'scattered sushi', meaning sushi that hasnt been rolled up. So literally speaking, it's rice topped with stuff you would have gotten inside of sushi. The rice in Salmon Chirashi was not seasoned though, but the portion of salmon and avocado was very generous.

The Tonkotsu Ramen, interestingly enough was served with a side of fried rice, and two dumplings. I found it very intriguing that Wagaya's rice dishes are served with noodles, whilst noodle dishes have a serving of rice on the side. Anyway, the ramen was Hakata style as opposed to Tokyo style. Given this, the soup was not as creamy as Ramen Champion, or Hakataya, although to be honest I wasn't expecting that level of quality, as Wagaya isnt a ramen specialist. The dumplings were also rather nice and juicy.

Drinks wise, this is the Matcha Smoothie. It was flavourful and smooth, with the extra scoop of matcha ice cream on top.

Overall, I really enjoyed my time at Wagaya. I would definitely go there more often if it was nearer to my house. A couple of menu items were pretty average, but there were really quite a few items which are really outstanding.

Price Range: $15-$20 per person

Taste: 8/10
Value: 7/10
Service: 9/10
Environment: 8/10

Wagaya Japanese Restaurant Brisbane on Urbanspoon

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