Wok to Walk – I’d wok elsewhere

I was walking through Soho in London and I came upon a noodle bar called “wok to walk” on Brewer street and thought I’d get some takeaway noodles for lunch. The place certainly looks promising with a trendy look and feel, organized and clean cooking area, and 3 step menu. There’s 2 types of chili sauce on the tables along with your standard asian restaurant accompaniments It’s all fresh and made to order in front of you and service was quick. I decided on udon noodles with chicken and broccoli with Thai coconut sauce as it has a couple spicy-looking symbols next to it and I like some heat. The portion size was disappointingly small for my £6.35, nevertheless I headed back to work with a sense of optimism which was unfortunately misplaced.

Overall the food was pretty disappointing. Although the noodles and broccoli were well cooked the chicken was dry and there wasn’t nearly enough of it and the broccoli to warrant the cost of the food. Still, a good sauce would have made it all worthwhile but sadly the Thai Coconut I chose because of the 2 fiery heat symbols next to it on the menu was devoid of both spice and flavor. I got a hint or two of lemongrass but no fish sauce or lime, none of that tongue-coating sweet-sour-salty wonderfulness you would expect from even a moderately good thai sauce and there wasn’t even a hunt of heat. I know that there’s a big difference between what I and your mainstream human consider hot but I can tell you with absolute certainty that no chili has been even brought into the vicinity of that poor excuse for a sauce.

Whomever created Wok to Walk spent plenty of time on the look and feel of the place and not nearly enough on the quality of the food. I didn’t come in because they had trendy-looking white-on-orange signs, I came in because I wanted some good food. If I’d paid half the price I did I still would have considered it a waste of money and at the price I paid it’s highway robbery. Do yourself a favor and go to Wasabi or Samurai instead. It’s not made to order but it’s much better value for money.

Review – “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy

“The Road” by Cormac McCarthy is a haunting story of a dying man trying to save his son in a world blasted of all life and hope after an un-named apocalypse, empty of all but the “lucky” few survivors scrabbling for the precious few remaining cans of food in the burnt ruins of the world. The only reason he hasn’t used his only remaining bullet to end his own suffering is his desperation to get his young son he loves far enough south to survive the coming winter.

There is very little reminiscence in this novel, you don’t learn much about this man or what happened to the world because it truly doesn’t matter. The starving people in this story are down to their rudiments both in mind and body, almost all personality and emotion leached out of them. They are as grey as the landscape.

The author manages to maintain an undercurrent of desperation, fear, and hopelessness in this novel in a way that is completely immersive and convincing. The author states that he got the idea when in Texas with his son, and to me this seems like an outpouring of the fear every father has about his children, only amplified. The detailed way he narrates the day to day struggle of the characters and the man’s hopes and fears tells me this is a story about the author and his son, that this is a vehicle for him to vent his worries about the future. I’m a new father and this really connected with me in ways hard to explain which is one of the reasons I find this book so compelling.

This is one of the best books I’ve ever read and it’s certainly one of the darkest. I highly recommend it but it is not for the faint of heart.