A wet weekend in Manchester – a regular occurrence in summer! We were needing something warm and tasty to lift our spirits as the post holiday / going back to work in the morning reality was kicking in. So it was a good time to call in to Wagamama in Spinningfields for something which would give me a hug without weighing me down.
We shared a bowl of mushroom onigiri – mushrooms and rice rolled in panko and deep fried to a deep savoury perfection. My heart sank when I saw the sauce served with it- not another sweet chilli? But I was pleasantly surprised to find that actually it was massively garlicky and full of heat.
Once I was sure no one was going to be sitting next to us, I ordered the shirodashi ramen with rich dark stock. I love ramen but rarely have it because I eat it like a toddler; all over the place with my spoon / fork combo and end up with more on my chin and the table than in my belly.
Wagamama let you pick from three stocks for your ramen so I went for the richest one (obvs) and along with the tender as you like pork belly it soon made me forget my embarrassment about slurping in public and got stuck in! It was unbelievably filling. I assumed we would be ordering a sneaky second round of gyoza or something but I couldn’t finish the bowl which is unheard of for me!
Andrew went for the grilled duck donburi which he wolfed down – I only managed a couple of forkfuls. I’d describe this dish as silky! You’ve got a rice bowl with some shredded marinated duck, shredded onions, sweet potato and all sorts of veg, topped off with the most perfect fried egg and kimchee. It was properly comforting when he mixed it all together yet didn’t feel heavy like a similar bowl of fried rice would. I may have dreamed about that perfect fried egg since my visit!
Because a) I’m not drinking and b) Andrew was driving we hit the juices. I’m loving anything with ginger in so I went for the apple, ginger and spinach power juice while Andrew went more hipster with kale, apple, lime and pear repair juice. It didn’t power me like Popeye but it was tasty and I think quite filing, which may have contributed to me not finishing my ramen. Damn you healthy juice!
All in all, I like Wagamama in Spiningfields. It is so much brighter than the Printworks one and should be even more so once a planned refurb takes place, you can watch the world go by on Deansgate and Spinningfields (you can even eat outside if the rain ever stops) and it is a great lunch option as you are in and out in no time at all. Oh and you can read the recipes on your placemat, vow to make them at home and then just decide to go back and eat it there instead: perfect!
Wagamamma. Spinningfield Square, Manchester. M3 3AP
With thanks to Wagamama for contributing to our lunch.