I’ll admit it was the look of the Palm Sugar Lounge that made me notice this place. Located at the very top of the Liverpool ONE centre, the Palm Sugar Lounge looks slightly out of place next to the fun park set up just on the other side of the park. Chao Praya is the restaurant on the other side of its fancy looking lounge.
Looking for some Asian, I decided on this one, craving some really spicy food and given that their website looked nice, their menu delicious and the restaurant well decorated, I figured it would be worth a shot. As I walked in, I noticed all the Thai chefs buzzing around the open aired kitchen and the number of Thai waiters and waitresses buzzing around. This looked to be a great sign.
I started with their Tod Mun Pla (fried fish cakes) for £7.50. Four juicy golden discs soon arrived with a sweet thai chilli dipping sauce topped with peanuts and a small side salad. Freshly cooked, I warily cut into them, conscious of how hot they might be fresh from the fryer. They cooked these golden discs perfectly cooked and had a perfectly bouncy texture without being excessively chewy.
I’m always taken by the opportunity to have Thai drunken noodle and this month’s special involved a small variation, Udon Pad Kee Mao, the same drunken noodle but instead of rice noodle, used the classic Japanese buckwheat one for £12. As you can see from the picture below, the pad kee mao was generously peppered with large chunks of seafood and vegetables although I think the strangest adaptation was the addition of button mushrooms – something I’d never had, nor never really recommend in a dish like this. The chilli intensity in this dish definitely hit the edge of my tolerance and I caught myself sweating in return. I’m interested to see how their “hot” curries compare to a dish like this. Very tasty though.
I had a look at the dessert menu but felt rather full after this large meal. With two beers, the total ended up £26 although I also left a cash tip. Service was friendly, the place popular with locals and the food delicious.
Name: Chao Praya
Found at: 5-6 Kenyon Steps, Liverpool ONE, Liverpool, L1 3DF, United Kingdom