me and my friends discovered this modern italian style restaurant a few years back and go there everytime we find ourselves in vienna as we don't have one near us. but international readers fear not; there are plenty of locations all over the world which can be found here. the thing I love most about it, other than the lovely food of course, is the fact that it's a self service restaurant where you can watch your food being cooked which is not only a great interactive experience but also shows how fresh the ingredients are that they use to make your food. you can read more about their concept here but it's really simple and definitely one of the things I love about the place.
you receive this card when you enter the restaurant and they'll then put all the food and drinks you have on the card and you pay when you leave, it's as easy as that.
but now let's start talking about the food shall we. they offer everything you could ask for in an italian style restaurant, antipasti, pizza, pasta and of course dolci (desserts). along the cooking bar (pictured) they have different sections for every time of food where you can watch them prepare your meal. as for drinks you can buy soft drinks where you get food but there's also a bar section where you can get vino and all sorts. I had that time so that's what I'm going to be talking about, but I've tried the pizza there before and it's delicious just in case you were wondering.
ideally you pick up one of the menus before you get to the cooking bar because I'll tell you it'll take you a while to decide. they also have a specials board right by the bar though if you want to take a look there. next thing you need to do is decide what kind of pasta you want, yes that's right, you can decide what pasta you want with your chosen sauce, isn't that brilliant? they have the usual ones like penne and spaghetti but also some really cool ones if you want to try some pasta you haven't had before, they also do whole grain ones which is really good, next step would be gluten free I think.
after all the decisions you can now relax and watch the lovely person behind the bar make your ordered food. it's also a nice time to have a chat and they'll ask you if you want things like garlic or chili with your sauce or not so you won't end up having things in there you don't like. for people like me this is also a good possibility to spy a little bit and get recipe inspirations.
the step after that is what you've been waiting for, it's time to eat. and here's what I went for: Campanelle Salsiccia con Fichi (aka spicy italian sausage, fresh figs, tomato sauce). I'm not usually one for spicy food but I really wanted something different plus I love figs. it was spicy but I really enjoyed it, the fig gave a little something something to the dish which made it really special and I would have it again if I could.
altogether it was a very pleasant experience and I'm looking forward to going there again sometime soon and hopefully also going to one of their locations in the UK at some point. it's a restaurant I would definitely recommend because of the lovely fresh food and the modern concept. the only thing I'd say is that you shouldn't go there at peak time because you might have to queue quite a while to get your food. if you love modern italian food then you should definitely see if there's a Vapiano near you.