I had heard a lot about the unique dining experience at a restaurant called Inamo, the Pan Asian restaurant famous for its interactive tables and thought I should try it out for myself. A good friend of mine, Rose was visiting from Australia and she’s a bit of a geek so I thought she’d enjoy the experience. So brimming with anticipation, the three of us went along to their Soho restaurant for dinner.
We were greeted by a waiter who immediately explained how it all worked. A projected interactive screen on your table enables you to do lots of things by touching various icons. For example, you can call the waiter, view the menu, find out information about what’s happening in the area and even view a live feed of the chefs at work in the kitchen which I must say is quite reassuring! You can even play games with each other but I chose to decline my friend Carmen’s request to try it out, preferring a good old fashioned chinwag instead seeing as Rose only had a couple of hours and we hadn't seen her for a whole year. Next time, perhaps!
The most interesting part for me was the menu itself. The food and drinks menu is fully illustrated and when you touch a certain item that interests you, e.g. chicken satay, lo and behold, a picture of the food appears on your plate which gives you a really good idea of what to expect. Pretty cool and very engaging. The food arrived really quickly and was pretty good. When we were ready to go, we ordered the bill via the interactive table. The waiter magically appeared within a couple of minutes with the bill and the card machine.
The only downside, as with most touch-screen interfaces being overly sensitive, is that you can erroneously send your order to the kitchen before you've actually made a full order, at this point you would have to hit the “call waiter” button to undo it! All in all it was a novel experience. For a one off it’s great. You can even order a cab once you’re done. We had great fun playing around with the table. I must admit though that I prefer to be fussed over by the waiter when I dine out. Just sayin’