Canary Wharf - Cabot Place - Ryan Review
As with the Nando's in Jubilee Place, I'd walked through this a couple times and never ventured up to the top floor to the restaurants, but now I was on a mission - up the escalators I went.
Anyway, as this is in Canary Wharf, it's easily accessible. You can actually get three hours free parking on a weekend if you spend over £10 - otherwise it's priced at £3.80/2hrs, £5.30/3hrs, £9.50/4hrs and upwards from there... so probably one for the DLR or tube (Jubilee Line) as Canary Wharf has a stop on both.
Arrived here at about 2pm on a Friday afternoon - and the place was full with suit jackets and jeans (must be casual Friday...). Staff did as expected and luckily there was one two-seater table free so got that straight away. There is actually a separate till right by the entrance for online/takeaway orders, which hopefully means the whole till experience is quicker.
As for the restaurant... well, it was as thoroughly depressing a place to be eating as Jubilee Place. As you travel up the escalators, you see this nicely wooden clad exterior with what you think may be a large metal vent at the top - but you soon realise that this is a little mezzanine level and people are sat behind this grid like they're battery hens. The whole of the inside walls are completely grey and unplastered. It's like somebody built it and thought "sod it, I can't be arsed to paint this" and Nando's have thought it looks alright. It's not even like it highlights the original period characters by having bare brick walls or some other artsy-notion... it is just ugly and dirty. All amounts of electrical wires, drainpipes and other pipes are on show as well and have been as badly painted over as the walls. A tiny bit of decor is trying to hide it in the shape of golden copper orbs for the lighting and a couple of large canvasses... and also some winding black leather booths round the outside walls with box lights on the top of them (which are filthy and caked in dust)... but not enough to hide this.
The toilets consist of several unisex cubicles as well, but the first one I tried had a pool of water on the floor and the second one was just plain dirty that overall... this was a crap Nando's to look at.
As for the food, it came in just under 15 minutes and was a standard Nando's. I had a chicken fillet burger which didn't quite fill the ciabatta but had enough sauce on it and an average sized portion of chips, which were hot enough.