American chain Bubba Gump arrives in London and it is living next door to Trocadero. The restaurant serves mainly seafood dishes, especially shrimps, which is what the restaurant is all about.
When I visited last week they were not taking reservation. We arrived to a reception on the ground floor and advised that it would be a waiting time of 15-20 minutes for a table of three. Instead of giving our name for the table, they wanted our favourite film. New but not a very practical way, as the receptionist had to go through the list to ensure no one have already used the same film name.
The ground floor is a gift shop filled with Bubba Gump goods that you could browse and/or purchase while you wait for your table to be ready. Finally after standing round browsing the menu, our favourite film was called and we were directed to go upstairs to the main restaurant where “Mama” (a Bubba Gump staff to be exact) would take us to the table. But when you go upstairs, we had to queue again and there was another reception. It was like queuing at a theme park!
We got a table at one of the booth and a staff came to explain to us about the sign on the table. If it we display blue then it means we are fine, but if it display red then we need service.
The menu has a range of shrimps dishes, along with seafood such as lobster, and some interesting fishes that I have never heard – Tilapia and Mahi Mahi.
There are range of Bubba Gump speciality drinks and some of the drinks you can take the cup home. But the drinks are over priced as they were just flavoured slash ice (it reminded me of my childhood days of Slush Puppies).
We ordered a Strawberry Mango Chiller, Blue Lemon-Up and Mango Lemon Up (all £7.40 each). These came in a lite-up cup that you can take home. They were printed Bubba Gump plastic glass cup with a flashing base. When you lift the cup up there is a mini projector that projected the Bubba Gump logo.
“I’m Stuffed” shrimp (£17.50) is made up of seven shrimps. Each one individually wrapped in minced crab meat and baked in cheese and served with Jasmine rice which was a medium size ball (less then a rice bowl size!). It definitely look like a larger portion on the photo in the menu.
The dish was also served with a piece of garlic bread baguette, which look like was some pre-frozen bread that you could just buy cheaply at a supermarket freezer. Not considering the size and the garlic bread, the dish itself was okay, but it did get quite salty.
Lobster linguine (£16.75) for the price, you can get it better at some of London’s Italian restaurant. The dish had a few pieces of lobster meat but they were like rubber which imply they were not very fresh lobster.
The surf and turf (£19.50) comes with ribs and grilled shrimp skewers served with fries. The ribs look like it has been starved and we came to the conclusion it was ribs from a package. The only thing we thought was good on this dish was the grilled shrimp skewers. But overall not a price worth paying. It makes TGI Friday better value and better quality!
We spent around £30 per person (including 10% service charge) for three non-alcoholic drinks and three main dishes. The service was relatively okay, although I was taken around the whole restaurant to find a credit machine that will work. The restaurant has so many credit machine and they could only find two that were working to be able to pay the bill
My experience at Bubba Gump was like being at one of those holiday resort. This place will attract mainly tourist more than locals, as I feel there are better restaurants in London to dine.
Bubba Gump Shrimp Co (London)
13 Coventry Street,