Soho Square - Damien Review
I can’t really tell you how many times I’ve been to Soho Nando’s. I’ve been there that much over the last 7 years that the number is kinda’ insignificant. It’s a lot. This is mainly due to the central location. Just off Oxford Street. This time I was here for the Rate Your Nando’s reviewer meal and for my first time ever, we were seated in the downstairs area. The restaurant itself is generally well laid out, organised and decorated, with new art downstairs since my last visit. We were greeted and lead downstairs to the rest of the RYN crew, seated on a long long table in the middle.
When everybody arrived and we started ordering, the queue obviously got very long. A few of us had the idea of ordering at the tills upstairs, so went up there. While nobody else seemed to have a problem getting the RYN 20% discount, I managed to luck out and get served by the one person who didn’t know who we were and what we were doing. She sneered and laughed at me, thinking I was trying to pull a fast one for asking for a discount, then looking at me confused when I said “I’m with the Rate Your Nando’s Review group”. I persisted until she pulled over a college, who sorted out the 20%. When I paid, he walked off, coming back a minute or so later to tell me they had no £5 notes. I returned downstairs with a pocketful of coins to find the queue still quite long.
The food had started coming out by the time I got to the table. While I understand that we were a very large group and that we were never going to all get served at once, the latency between some of the meals coming out verged on ridiculous. I was served about 25 minutes after the first person, with a fair few people still chasing up their orders a long while after I’d finished eating. While I was happy conversing with the reviewers, I did feel for the un-fed, especially when it took several attempts at staff prompting before the food eventually turned up.
Food-wise, mine was pretty good. Though the chips were sparse and dry and I was short changed to the tune of half a slice of halloumi, my meal was still a pleasant one, the new chicken thighs being especially tasty (if slightly pinky inside). After the dinner, we partook in the RYN quiz and people began to leave. A few of us stayed back to enjoy the cleaning of the table. A few sneers were thrown in our direction as work began at removing the mound of spicy rice that Rate Your Nando’s co-founder James managed to dump on the table. We eventually got the very strong impression that they wanted us gone, so left (to no goodbyes).
Overall, the meal was nice, the company was great, and the restaurant itself was as accommodating and well-decorated as ever. I guess the staff that agreed to let RYN host their reviewer meal weren’t quite banking on so many of us turning up. Hopefully we didn’t ruin their Wednesday and we’ll be invited back again soon.