On our trip to try out the new menu, we arrived at Liverpool’s Chaophraya restaurant having never tasted Thai food.
Entering the restaurant we were met with the Thai ‘Wai’ greeting from a waitress wearing traditional dress, and shown to our candle-lit table which looked out over Liverpool ONE and towards Albert Dock.
The new Thai wooden menu was brought over to us immediately. Whilst glancing through it, my friend and I were impressed with the wide range of food, drinks and ingredients it had to offer.
It became apparent the menu has been designed to take foodies on a unique journey through Thai culture along the Chao Phraya River.
We began our own exploration with some refreshing non-alcoholic cocktails while we decided on our food for the evening. I ordered the Chaophraya Fruit Punch (£5), which mixed pineapple juice with orange juice, lime juice and grenadine, and my friend ordered the tropical option made up of orange juice, fresh banana, lime juice and honey (£5).
Our food-focused journey started with a look through the small plates and snacks part of the menu, however what we ordered was far from small.
After being informed that Thai culture is focused on ‘family style’ eating we opted for the Chaophraya Platter (priced £10 per person for a minimum of two people). The feast was served with a selection of chicken satay, Thai fish cakes, chicken spring rolls, squid and wing bean tempura.
We then continued our adventure with a substantial main course and ordered side dishes too having been tempted by our waiter.
I picked the palm sugar and chilli glazed chicken ‘Gai Yang’ (£16), which came with spatchcock baby chicken grilled over charcoal with a palm sugar, chilli and coriander glaze as well as a salad of carrots, mango, asparagus, papaya and baby gem lettuce. The sugar snap peas, mushrooms and tenderstem broccoli (£4.50) side dish also went well with the meal.
Sticking to the Grill and Steam section of Chaophraya’s new menu, my friend ordered the sirloin steak with Panang sauce (£19). She chose to have the meat cooked medium-well and was impressed with the quality and the taste, confirming it was just how she liked it.
The steak was served with tenderstem broccoli and mushrooms alongside a small bowl of creamy Panang sauce, finished with kafir lime, topped with a quail egg and served with a side dish of steamed jasmine rice (£3).
To conclude our Thai foodie trip, my friend ordered the impressive chocolate bombe (£7.50) which, once melted, revealed the salted caramel ice cream (the dish usually came with Thai whiskey ice cream but my guest wanted to try a different filling) and a honey and toasted sesame popcorn centre with hot caramel sauce.
I finished the meal with the white chocolate box (£7.50). The white chocolate mousse was filled with a raspberry coulis and a butter shortbread, served alongside a mini macaroon, passion fruit syrup and a garnish of edible flowers and a selection of berries.
We both agreed that the dessert was a particular highlight of the menu as it was light and filling and an ideal way to finish the meal after such a rich main course and a sizeable starter.
Whilst being at the upper end of Liverpool’s food offering, both my guest and I were impressed that Chaophraya’s new menu also offered a contemporary take on many of the traditional Thai dishes. In light of our positive experience, we both agreed we would certainly be visiting more Thai food hotspots in the city and questioned why it had taken us so long to try.