Rosa’s Thai Cafe has been a popular London dining hot spot ever since it took up residence in a corner of Soho. With its authentic dishes created by none other than Thai owner Saiphin Moore, cosy interior, and boozy iced teas, it’s no surprise this place is an absolute winner for many a London (and now Liverpool) diner. Having headed to London to try out the original restaurant, we now went to see whether its brand new dockside addition lived up to its name.
Rosa’s Thai sits right in the heart of the dock, nestled right next Spanish catalan Lunyalita and with the mouthwatering Rough Handmade Bakery within close proximity. As you walk inside, the fragrant smell of Thai food delights the senses, which, if you’ve ever visited Thailand, will bring back a wave of nostalgia and an almighty stomach rumble as you prepare to taste the flavours of Asia. After a friendly greeting and a scour of the drinks menu, we settled on two traditional Thai milk teas (also available black or as coffee) and set to work on the menu.
Rosa’s Thai offers a range of small plate, starter style dishes as well as larger main courses, all paying homage to traditional Thai home cooking. To start, we opted for the pumpkin prawn crackers with sweet chilli and satay dipping sauces, the spicy sausage and the sweetcorn fritters. Crunching our crackers and sipping our milk tea, we could have been in Thailand, except instead of white sand and palm trees, we had a historic view of different boats and Liverpool landmarks, which, when all is said and done, is a pretty spectacular compromise.
Our starting dishes were finished quickly, with one being as equally as good as the other, the sweet, herby flavours of the crunchy sweetcorn fritters, a perfect contrast to the punchy spice of the sausage. Onto the mains and with so much to choose from (and the traditional Pad Thai being a firm favourite) it was proving difficult to decide. We eventually settled on the signature Butternut Thai Curry and the famous ‘Drunken Noodles’ (named that way due to being the perfect flavours to eat after a few too many). The butternut curry consisted of soft chunks of roasted butternut squash in a smokey, slightly spicy red Thai sauce. There are a number of different rices available such as steamed and coconut but to accompany this we chose a basket of sticky rice, which worked perfectly. The drunken noodles were the wide, flat kind, smothered in a tangy, spicy sauce and tonnes of veg – we opted for chicken but they also come with tofu, beef or prawns, just delicious. As an extra, we did it the ‘Thai way’ and threw a crispy fried egg on the top, which was perfectly runny, adding the ultimate finishing touch.
Although full to the brim with delicious savoury dishes, in my opinion, there’s always room for the traditional Thai dessert of Mango and sticky rice. This is a rice pudding like dessert which is sweetened with sugar and accompanied by soft, sticky mango – a delicious staple enjoyed all over Thailand and now, in Liverpool. If you know, you know, and if you don’t, try it.
It wont be long before we’re back in Rosa’s Thai to get our fix of the rest of the menu (Massaman Curry im lookin’ at you) and don’t leave it too long until you dig in as well.