Nestled in a quiet street less than a two minute walk from the hustle and bustle of Covent Garden station in London, is Inamo Restaurant, a pan-Asian styled eatery.
Simple and colourful lighting provide style to the three story restaurant. Nicely spaced tables with lighting focused on each table makes for a cosy atmosphere. It almost seems like you are dining by yourselves.
Subtle music provides a background that is neither chaotic nor noisy. My friend and I easily carried on a conversation while dining. We appreciated the environment as we had some catching up to do.
Unique Covent Garden Eatery
What’s unique about this Covent Garden Eatery is that your dining experience is centred around a tablet that is sitting on your table.
You order your food and drinks on the tablet. You can use it to call your waiter, especially if you need help trying to figure out how to work the thing. While trying to decide what to order, magically, pictures of the menu items show up virtually on your plate. Every few seconds the pictures change to another item. It’s really cool and a good talking point while you’re deciding what to eat.
You can also play games on your table, change your virtual tablecloth or colour on it. You can even check on how your meal is coming along with the “chef cam.”
Inamo Restaurant is different and a lot of fun. You can take the time to really enjoy the experience. As at no time did we feel rushed during the meal or pushed to leave.
The Food at Inamo
Japanese, Chinese, South Korean and Thai dishes appear on the extensive menu. Your choices range from sushi to curry to noodles and dishes for one to platters to share.
When the meals came, the first thing I noticed is that they looked exactly like they did in the pictures, from colour to presentation. And with pictures of them flashing everywhere, that seemed like quite a feat.
For starters, I ordered the dragon roll, crunchy tempura shrimp, topped with creamy avocado and a touch of mayo.
The menu says ‘great to share’ but I ate the whole thing. It was very tasty and quite filling. It had a fusion of flavours that you might not necessarily think go together but it really worked. My friend had the crispy vegetable tempura, which was lightly battered. It had just the right amount of crisp to it and was not greasy.
For the main course, I had the pork chop with Yakiniku (grilled meat) sauce with rice and a Thai mango salad. Thin slices of English pork chop marinated overnight in a zingy nam jim and drizzled with a tangy yakiniku sauce delivered another unique combination of flavors.
My friend chose the Singapore noodles, egg and vermicelli noodles infused with an oyster and ginger sauce with pork belly, prawn, chicken, crunchy peppers, bean sprouts and fried shallots. Enough for one but plenty to share.
The sushi and sashimi and Asian tapas appetisers range in price from £5 to £12 ($6 to about $15) and the main courses, the Inamo classics and curries from £16 to £25 ($19 to $31), Inamo restaurant also offers a selection of soups and salads. Desserts range from £5 to £8 ($6 to $10). The U.S. dollar prices are an estimate as the conversion rate is constantly changing.
The Dining Experience
The dining experience was like having a candle lit dinner in the comforts of your own home. The attentive staff seemed to be there just when you needed them. After three hours my friend and I had finished our meal and were up to date with each other’s lives.
The only improvement that I could suggest would be that your meals came out at the same time. My appetiser came out a few minutes before my friend’s and likewise for the main course. A small point, but it would have been nice if they came out together so you could start to eat at the same time.
The one thing you have to remember is to press the order button on the tablet or you could be waiting for a long time for your meal. If you forget, you’ll have only yourself to blame.
Other Happenings at Inamo
Inamo is an experience, a unique experience and a fun night out. Because of the range of menu choices, I would definitely go back.
Check Inamo’s calendar to find a list of activities happening at Inamo Restaurant. Monthly activities include a music night, match dating night and an evening of magic. Inamo also offers sushi making for kids . The lower level, although a dining area, can also act as a function room.
With another location in Soho already available, expansion for Inamo is continuing. A third location in trendy Camden will be opening at the end of November, 2016.
Looking for more activities in London? Read MilesGeek’s Little Known London – Discovering London on Foot.