Ahead of their impending launch in Liverpool, Unlock Liverpool was invited down to Rosa’s Thai Cafe, just off Carnaby Street in Soho, London, to have a sneak peek of their authentic menu and get a little taste of what’s to come to our city. Here’s how we got on!
Jumping on the London train to Lime Street is always a little bit exciting. Whilst we have more than enough on our ever growing Liverpool foodie and social scene, there’s something about London that just needs to be experienced once in a while and so when the guys at Rosa’s Thai got in touch, we were more than excited! Meeting at Euston, we jumped the train straight to the hustle and bustle of London’s Carnaby area, an eccentric street full of life, housing quirky independent boutiques, clothes and make up shops and most importantly, a shed load of super cool eateries, all of which excited the foodies within us! It’s safe to say you definitely aren’t spoilt for choice when it comes to restaurants in London, with everything from brunch through to supper, but there’s something about the little hideaways on Carnaby Street that scream seriously good vibes and even better food. Sitting amongst them, tucked away in their very own corner of Carnaby is Rosa’s Thai. We had arrived.
Unassuming from the outside, Rosa’s Thai takes on the fuss-free appearance of a traditional Thai restaurant, with the unmistakable smell of Thai cooking and spices oozing from the building. Having just returned from a recent trip to Thailand, it was an amazing, welcoming smell. We were ready to eat.
Walking inside Rosa’s, we received the warmest welcome from both the team behind Rosa’s as well as the front of house staff, who couldn’t do enough for us from the minute we arrived. We sat down on a table with the owner of Rosa’s, the lovely Saiphin Moore who talked us through everything from the idea behind Rosa’s, Rosa’s history, Rosa’s plans for the future and even the best dishes on the menu. Thai born Saiphin also spoke with great excitement about everything we could expect in Liverpool when Rosa’s launches in the Albert Dock (exciting is an understatement).
Leaving it to the experts, the team at Rosa’s chose a wide selection of of dishes from Rosa’s delicious menu for us to get stuck into. We started with Rosa’s Boozy Thai Ice tea (an alcoholic take on the traditional, refreshing Thai beverage) and of course, some sweet and spicy Thai prawn crackers with a delicious chilli dip. We nibbled, drank, chatted and absorbed the cosy hustle and bustle of Rosa’s Thai cafe as diners all around us enjoyed the sheer delights of authentic Thai cuisine.
Next up were our starters, from beautifully flavoured spring rolls to pork skewers and chicken satay, we dived in and thoroughly enjoyed the well put together appetisers, consisting of innovative and creative flavours whilst still paying homage to the authenticity of Thailand. Our stand out dish from the appetiser selection had to be the tofu in tamarind sauce – super firm and light, the spongy tofu had totally absorbed the sweet and tangy flavours of tamarind and each bite was followed by the crunch and smokey flavours of toasted sesame – an absolute must!
Our appetisers were quickly followed by more drinks, this time the Ginger and Lemongrass fizz – tangy and refreshing with a kick of sour ginger syrup. It was now time for the main event. Again, we were treated to an abundance of delights from the dinner menu including traditional and worldwide favourite, Pad Thai, ‘Drunken Noodles’ which are traditionally known as guay tiew pad kee mao – the name ‘Drunken Noodles’ pays homage to something that’s perfect to eat after a big night out – delightfully sweet and spicy in equal measures, this dish is available with chicken, beef, tofu and prawns and is another must try. As well as noodles we sampled the fabulously creamy red curry with chicken and pineapple, another signature, the red butternut curry and our overall favourite, the stir fried aubergine. Our favourite pick consisted of deep fried aubergine, yellow bean and soya, and it was the perfect combination of textures and flavours that made the dish a total winner in our eyes. That being said, every dish we ate off the Rosa’s Thai cafe menu was honestly delicious, packed full of authentic spices, the chefs at Rosa’s combined flavour with generous portions and plenty of smaller sharing plates making for a truly sociable dining experience.
Much to our delight, we were gifted a signed copy of the Rosa’s Thai Cafe cookbook to try our hand at all of the amazing dishes featured on the menu as well as some other traditional favourites. It’s a relief to know we can re-create our very own drunken noodles ahead of our next fix at the Rosa’s Thai Liverpool launch!
After lunch, we were treated to a quick tour around the amazing Carnaby from the guys at Carnaby London. Not only were we shown some Carnaby’s best hidden gems we were also given a Carnaby neighbourhood card for 10% off all the businesses in Carnaby. If you’re ever in London, don’t neglect this hidden gem!
A huge thank you to all of the guys behind Rosa’s Thai cafe for inviting us down for a taste of what’s to come. With Rosa’s Thai opening at the Albert Dock at the end of the month, watch this space for a fantastic new addition to our already exciting foodie scene, bringing our Royal Albert Dock one step closer to a bustling food and drink hub. Watch this space!