This cosy 25-seater is reasonably priced and serves a mouthwatering noodle bowl
Anna Nagar’s new Pan Asian restaurant offers customised bowls of rice and noodles, making a case for fresh and healthy food
This cosy little place down Shanthi Colony is all about reasonably priced, fresh, wholesome food and quick service. And what’s more, the cuisine at The Wok Shop is the flavour of the season — Pan Asian! However, what truly drew us to this 25-seater restaurant is that it belongs to the same Singapore-based parent company as the wildly popular Nasi and Mee Asian Canteen brand. In fact, they share the same executive chef — and the franchise owners, couple, Jaideep and Bhavna Sheth start off by telling us about the extensive 45-day training their team went through before The Wok Shop opened their doors in Chennai last week.
Running 57 outlets of Tibbs Frankie in Chennai and Bengaluru combined — Jaideep is not new to the food business and says, “I always wanted to get into the Pan Asian space — but I was not looking to create my own brand. The Wok Shop which has three outlets already in Bengaluru was a perfect module for us — as we were indeed looking for a QSR brand.” With plans of opening three more outlets in Chennai, he adds that generous portions along with fresh and healthy customised ingredients are the standout features of a meal here. Expect an easy-to-order menu comprising Asian Chicken Wings, momos, Bao Burgers, Rice and Noodle bowls, besides some iced teas and a dessert.
As promised when we are served the chicken Thukpa noodle soup, the big bowl is filling and stuffed with veggies, cubes of meat, noodles and seasoned with sauces and spices. The best part about the momos here are the miso and XO sauce — the former packs a serious punch while the latter is sweet and addictive. Jaideep insists we try the Sweet Potato fries and after polishing off half the plate, we concede that the sweet, salt and spice work perfectly together here.
Make your bowl
The Wok Shop represents Ravindran Nahappan’s (founder and director of Singapore-based Lioncity Foods) foray into the Asian fast casual space in India following the success of Nasi and Mee Asian Canteen. “Our ethos is to encourage diners to create their own balance. The Wok Shop allows you to pick 100 gm of vegetables with every fresh rice or noodle bowl wok’d right in front of you with a combination of carbs and proteins. Literally, ‘You Pick and We Wok’!” he says.
Soon we are munching on the Korean Wings that are sweet, sticky and dotted with sesame, while we watch our rice bowl ingredients get tossed in a wok. Served with croquettes of chicken and cabbage garnish, it is a complete lunch at just Rs 259. The Asian Bao Burgers are grilled like a panini and packed with salad and a chicken patty. We chase it all down with some iced lemon tea and promise to try the Aloe Vera & Lychee iced tea next time. The bite-sized Chocolate Bao Zi is suitably drenched in chocolate sauce and stuffed with enough chocolate to warrant a decadent tag.
Located in Anna Nagar, a meal for two at Rs 500.