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Saturday, 17 December 2011

SUDA, Thai Restaurant, Covent Garden








Suda restaurant arrived in London five months ago, located in the romantically lit St Martin’s Courtyard in Covent Garden. The eatery is casual and comfortable and perfect for a light lunch in between shopping stints. Turning down Slingsby Place I was amazed by this sparkling oasis, lovely independent shops and flower stalls make it a gorgeous area to hang out.

Inside the staff are unassuming and sweet, offering help with the menu when I struggled to choose a Thai inspired cocktail. My dad chose the aromatic Lemongrass Bellini – fresh lemongrass with Thai ginger, a lemon twist, charged with prosecco and I had an eccentric but very pretty Thai Sunrise, a martini cocktail made with Gold tequila shaken with Cointreau, passion fruit puree, lime, sugar and finished with a drop of grenadine. Not a mix of flavours I would usually choose but the drink was surprisingly well balanced.

We decided on a selection of starters to share… an unbelievably yummy portion of chicken satay sticks, perfectly marinated and cooked served with a spicy peanutty sauce. Salty sweet potato crisps & tom yum flavoured rice crackers arrived presented in two glasses. A bowl of light crispy calamari looked so fresh and delectable that even I, a serial non-fish eater tried it, and though I found the texture a little rubbery, can’t deny that they tasted good. The signature SUDA fresh rice wrap with braised duck and Thai herbs was an interesting cold dish that I found surprisingly enjoyable. The only starter we didn’t approve of was the Thai eggplant salad with grilled scallops and chilli, it was an odd combination of ingredients, not very easy on the palate.

The fragrant mains created a wonderfully colourful table, Green Chicken Curry for me, and Red Roast Duck Curry for my dad, and a large bowl of Prawn Pad Thai to share. The curries were delicious with ample ginger and flavoursome vegetables, though still quite spicy considering we asked for milder versions of the menu options. The meat was thinly sliced, beautifully cooked and seasoned appropriately. The Pad Thai noodles were sweet and comforting, the ideal dish for a winter’s lunch.

To satisfy our sugary urges we tried a couple of the Thai desserts, notorious for being odd. Tropical fruit sorbets were a nice palate cleanser though a little boring, the banana fritters were much more exciting, arriving on the plate still hot and served with a dollop of creamy vanilla glace.

Suda offers fresh and tasty Thai food, inspired by a balance of the key five flavours – sweet, sour, salty, bitter and spicy. We had a lovely meal that reminded me, once again why Thai food is my favourite cuisine.

Visit the Suda website here.

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