Excellent food, nice atmosphere, interesting concept but.....
I loved almost everything about this place. If you go when it's uncrowded it's a snap to order quickly and get your food however if it is busy you could be standing in line a long time just to place your order. My biggest issue is if you wanted to for example, order a salad, a pasta dish and maybe an appetizer, you would have to order from three different places and stand in three different lines. I went for lunch once, they weren't busy and it wasn't an issue but I went for dinner when they were busy and i stood in line for so long I thought it would be nice to go somewhere and have someone just take everyones order all at once. Nice idea but seriously flawed.
I enjoy Vapiano.
I lived in the Netherlands for a few months and was a repeat customer for Vapiano over there. Their pastas and pizzas were great. Basically, the way Vapiano works is that you get a card from the hostesses at the beginning and you give that card to the chefs at the various pasta/pizza/salad/bar sections. The chefs swipe your card and you pay the hostesses at the end. There are no servers. The Boston Vapiano was pretty good. For about $10 you can get a good sized pizza or pasta. I tried the toscana pizza (Spicy Sliced Sicilian Pepperoni, Fresh Tomatoes, Basil Pesto, Black Olives) which I thought was excellent. The restaurant itself has nice outdoor seating and the interior is trendy. The bar area is small, but other than that I really enjoyed my experience here. I will be a repeat customer for Vapiano-Boston as well.
Cafeteria style pasta.
We walked in the front door and were met by a friendly hostess that told us how the place works. The basic rule is that everyone is handed a card to tally consumption and then you use the card to check out.
The pasta choices are pretty mainstream and created when you order. The quantity of sauce is fairly small. The fresh pasta choices are great and there are even two whole wheat varieties. Our cooks were friendly, but if the place gets busy I don't see how it won't be a big mob scene, but tonight it was not crowded.
The pasta was cooked well. The taste of the minimal sauce was good. The price for two plates of serve yourself pasta was $27. Based on my experience at a shopping mall pasta place that is similar in concept I think their prices are high. $20 for what we received seems like a more reasonable fee. Vapiano is a chain and seems popular, so give it a try if you like pasta. We ran into some college student friends and they seemed very happy with the place and were repeat customers.
If I return I will try the pizza, salads, and sandwiches. I just doubt I will go there for pasta again.