Some of you will have been to the original Inamo, famous for it’s electronic interactive tables, where you can order your food by swiping your table and if you’re bored of your dining companion you can even play games on it. I’d heard mostly good things about the first Inamo (now in Soho, first in St James’) and I like Pan-Asian food, so was keen to try the new one, around the corner from where I work.
It seems like regulars of the original Inamo will be disappointed, because the tables are no longer interactive. You get an ipad instead, which yes, I quite enjoy using, but wonder if just ordering food from the waitress might be more effective/faster. They do offer this ‘clicky thing’ (similar to a mouse) for the table, whereby you can click and watch a video of the chefs cooking (live), which I quite liked. But then they also offer fairly pointless options like you can store photos of yourself on the table (my description is testament that I just didn’t get it). So perhaps the whole technology thing is a bit gimmicky and where it worked for the first restaurant, it doesn’t really for the second.
Now for the positives. The food was excellent. Delicious sushi, lovely vegetable tempura, addictive dumplings, good chicken satay (I liked the coconut addition). We saw a lot of other fabulous looking plates go by. We did go with an offer, which always helps, and otherwise – as at most restaurants serving ‘small plates’ – the costs can really add up.
I thought the service was excellent, everyone was very friendly without seeming fake, and they are clearly doing their best. It was very busy and there was a nice vibe – plus the cocktails (and the cocktail bar) looked good too. They need to iron out a few things – but that’s what a soft launch is for – so I think die hard Inamo fans need to give the new one a chance.
11 – 14 Hanover Place
London, WC2E 9JP