Saturday, 18 May 2013

aobaba in Longdan Express - Elephant and Castle

I am being a lazy blogger... I'm playing Candy Crush and I'm on level 117... I hate this game by the way. It becomes frustrating when you've almost finished a level and then you don't have any more moves left!

Er... uh-hm, what? Oh. Am I supposed to be talking about aobaba? The cafe / restaurant that has FINALLY opened in Longdan Express. Uh well yes I am!! Whoopee!! ^_^
Outside aobaba


Inside aobaba


Another view


The leaflet


The other side
So last Friday after work I went to have a look at it. I was dying to have a taste at their bubble tea, and see if it is good enough as those other places that serve bubble tea. It's funny how bubble tea has become so famous in the UK all of a sudden. You can see shops of them all over the place i.e. China Town...

In aobaba they give you a choice of making your own mixture of bubble tea. So you choose the type of tea you want milk (which is 50p more than the other tea base) or black tea / green tea / crushed ice. Then next you choose are the type of bubbles you want in the tea... tapioca pearl, boba or jelly.

The first one I went for was the green apple tea (don't know if it was green or black tea used), and the girl at the counter suggested I choose the lychee topping (can't remember if it was tapioca pearl or the boba). The green apple tea tasted sour. Yeek. But the lychee topping compensated for the sourness. If you like sour stuff, go for the green apple flavour!!
Green apple tea and lychee bubble tea
aobaba also serves food. Woohoo! :D So I also asked the girl what to have... She recommended the spring rolls, and I found myself ordering the mix and match spring rolls. They were good. But expensive at £4. :(
My mix and match spring ro



Total cost: £7

After you have ordered, they will call out your receipt number so you can collect your food. It's a bit like going to Argos! Hah!

I went back the next day to try out there pho.
Another view from the inside
It was a good day because it rained, and I was sure that this would warm me up for a bit. I had taken the leaflet that I was given. I was contemplating whether to have the beef pho or the OMG-bun than... I was thinking I would go for the latter but subconsciously ordered the beef pho! What was I thinking?! I also ordered the strawberry milk tea with strawberry pearls... Was it good?
Strawberry milk and strawberry pearls bubble tea

Hm, the beef pho's soup was a little salty to my liking. The pho was ok. There was thinly sliced beef and beef balls (they are like fishballs).The sliced beef was ok, but not as tender as the one I had in Dallas or Cafe Mama Pho. I could taste and smell some of the herbs that were in which was bearable...
Beef pho


A different view of my beef pho



The best part of this dining trip was definitely the strawberry milk bubble tea! Oh it was definitely tasty than the apple green tea! I would definitely recommend all the milk bubble teas (I haven't tried them all yet ¬,¬"). They are the best!

Total cost: £10.50

I dined alone on both occasions, and so did a lot of people who went in there. Some were in groups too. It is a big dining area, but the bins in purple are quite hard to see. I actually left my tray on the table on both occasions because I did not know where to put them! Some people were handing them back to the people at the counter... Something that needs to be improved on in time...

Would I recommend aobaba? Yes - definitely for the bubble tea. I think I will need to try out the other food in the nearest future.

I forgot to mention there is also free wi-fi!! After purchasing your food, you will find a password (which changes everyday) on the bottom of your receipt. I used it twice on both occasions, and the reception is not bad...

My geeky rating: 4/5

Good points:
- Get to choose your own mixture of bubble tea
- Food is freshly made for you
- Dining area is really spacious
- Free wi-fi

Bad points:
- A little expensive
- Could do with some visible bins
- Salty soup (recipe change needed)

Address: 128 -132 Walworth Road, Elephant & Castle, London SE17 1JL 
Website: http://www.aobaba.com/


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6 comments:

  1. I really need to try some Bubble Tea, am very curious about it! I love sour drinks so would probably go for apple, but strawberry sounds nice too. What is "boba"?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Heheh. There's loads of places in China Town (shops, cafes and restaurants) that make bubble tea so I recommend any of them.

      Boba is the same as tapioca pearls but I actually don't know the difference. :-S

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  2. I am local, and I love the idea of this place. I have given them three chances, and every times to food and the service were not very good. Staff are mostly clueless, and the double doors are always open to the Walworth Road, which makes it noisy and cold. There is zero atmosphere, and never very many customers. Given that there are hundreds of students living within a few minutes of the place, and no other Vietnamese places anywhere near, you would expect this place to be heaving.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah I know what you mean. I got good/exceptional service both times from the staff who served. The first person was really bubbly. I didn't sit too close to the double doors as it was cold on both days I went in, so I can't comment on that. I agree, there is zero atmosphere, although I did like the music they played. It is expensive for students compared to Tai Tip Mein where there is a buffet and bigger portions of food... I think they need to advertise aobaba a bit more, lower their prices, and add less salt in the soup!

      But I forgot to mention the main good point (which I will add in a minute) - that there is free wi-fi. The receipt has the password!

      There is an old Vietnamese restaurant in Camberwell... I will try that out one day, and compare it!!

      Delete

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