My friend and I watched a movie at Central World; when it finished we decided to have a something small to eat in the shopping mall. What was amazing to me when we tried to find a place to eat was that every food establishment was packed with people and some places had a long queue of waiting customers. We decided to go to Open Table Tokyo Cafe because it had the shortest queue wait.
Open Table Tokyo Cafe is an open air restaurant…meaning it is situated in the middle of the hallway and it has no walls or ceiling. The decor has marble tables & wooden chairs, industrial style hanging lamps and faux wooden floors. Open Table Tokyo Cafe specializes in 'fusion Japanese & Italian food'…I should have know better when I read the menu. I was skeptical; but, I was hungry and did not want to wait any longer.
The first dish we shared was Open Table salad. The salad had fresh salad leaves, cranberries, feta cheese and almond slices. The salad had a Japanese salad dressing. The salad had a good mix of textures and flavors; nothing wrong with the salad just for the simple fact that it was boring. Oh and it had no connection to either Japan or Italy…I thought this was a fusion Japanese & Italian restaurant.
The second dish was shared was Ebi tempura roll. I think the person who created this dish had good intention in trying to make sushi a bit more different & interesting. However; in my opinion, it was simply weird.
Let me go from bottom to top; the rice was decently cooked, the smoked salmon was undistinguishable & flavor-free, the slab of cold cream cheese did add a creamy texture, the ebi tempura was crispy but was a tad over deep-fried, the industrial mayonnaise was simply disgusting in terms of color, texture & taste (so so yucky) and finally the slice of asparagus to top off only added a green color to the dish. What on earth happened here?
The third dish we shared was Ebiko tempura pasta. The pasta was a bit sad. The cooking of the noodles was good; but from there, everything went downhill. The restaurant was stingy on the ebiko, the sauce was watery and had no taste. The fried ebi tempura did add contrast of texture but did not add anything in terms of taste. Oh my oh my!
Overall; my suspicions of this place was very correct. The service was dreadful; but then again, the place was overflowing with customers, so I will give them the benefit of the doubt at how awful the service was. However; it did not help that the service girls were brain dead and the simple order of another bottle of water was a painful experience. I was still hungry but I did not want to waste more time trying to order more food from these girls.
Open Table Tokyo Cafe had gazillions of customers who seemed to be enjoying what they were eating. Eating at Open Table Tokyo Cafe; made me wonder if I truly know what I am eating and can I truly trust my taste buds. Yet; there I was pondering how on earth can these people be paying for food like this. Are my taste buds so arrogant that I cannot even enjoy this type of food?
I finally snapped out of pondering and decided…YES, I know what I am eating and NO, my taste buds are not arrogant. I do eat all types of food at all types of price ranges and when it is good.
I will never ever condemn people for what they like to eat and what they consider to be good. Open Table Tokyo Cafe is just giving what most Thais want; affordable, asian infused with western food in a environment that is easy-going. Nothing wrong with that. So; all I can say is that Open Table Tokyo Cafe was simply not my cup-of-tea and that I will not return.
Address: 6th floor Central World
Ratchadamri Road; Bangkok