Thailand is a special place for Phil and I, our very first conversations included talking about our experiences there, we got engaged just over the border in Cambodia before heading back to Thailand for a week of beaches and rock climbing and the food… Oh the food!
There are a few Thaikhun Street Food restaurants in the UK now and we were invited to try out their Nottingham branch to celebrate their brand new children’s menu in collaboration with National Geographic Kids.
Opened in the Victoria Centre’s newly developed food court, Thaikhun is accessed from the ground floor via a lift or escalator up to the next level. A tuktuk greets you and as you enter the restaurant it really is like being transported to Thailand, with the tempting aromas of traditional Thai food floating around props and decoration taken from the streets of the South East Asian region.
The restaurant is deceptively big, like a tardis where you walk through and it just keeps going! There’s also an outdoor area which has a lovely vibe to it and I can imagine being a great place to eat of a summer evening.
We were shown to our table and a drinks order taken, then with the drinks came a basket of tasty prawn crackers and sweet chilli dip. The menu was packed full of almost too many choices but good descriptions made it quite straightforward to pick a meal. The children’s menu was in a DIY style where you pick three elements to build a dish. All kids’ meals come with some veggie sticks, a drink, a milky ice lolly and some critters to try at the end.
Phil and I shared the most delicious satay chicken skewers we’ve ever tried for our starter, and Toby’s chicken and noodles with BBQ sauce came out at the same time. If your kids are fast eaters then it’s probably worth asking the servers to bring their food at the same time as yours to avoid boredom meltdowns later, but Toby takes his time so it worked well for us to have his food brought out straight away.
For our main courses, I had BBQ pork belly with rice and Phil opted for a Thai green curry. Mine was absolutely beautiful, with a delicate light sauce and sesame seeds over meat that melted in the mouth. I loved the sauce so much that I kept sneakily dipping my food in Toby’s because he preferred to have his and noodles on their own.
Phil has a bit of a love/hate relationship with Thai green curry because he often chooses it but is almost as frequently disappointed by it. Not this time! He thoroughly enjoyed it and I had a little taster too, which was lovely because I’m a wuss with spicy food and this had enough heat to let you know you were eating a curry, but not so hot that the gorgeous flavours are lost. In Phil’s words:
It’s the best Thai green curry I’ve had outside of Thailand. It’s so authentic.
Toby enjoyed his ice lolly for pudding and we chose to share a Thai Bounty pudding which was a melt in the middle chocolate cake with coconut ice cream. Sadly they had run out of the ice cream so we had vanilla instead, which was a shame as it detracted from the Thai flavours element, but it was still tasty.
At the end, we were presented with a tub of cooked meal worms, which Toby was fascinated by but refused to try!
The staff were all incredibly friendly and helpful. They were always accessible should we need anything and checked in with us to make sure our meals were okay, without being obtrusive.
Toby had been having an epic tantrum on the way in and started to build up again once he’d finished his lolly, so we had to walk around showing him the various props and paraphernalia. The staff were lovely about it and it’s a really family friendly environment with great service.
Would We Return?
I’m guessing that you can tell that the answer is a resounding yes! In fact we’re planning a return trip along with my parents to thank them for all their help with the kids and stuff.
This was hands down the best Thai meal we’ve ever had in this country – and we’ve had a lot of them! The restaurant feels so authentic and welcoming, the staff are friendly and the food is superb. I would definitely recommend telling you server if you don’t want the kids’ food coming out before yours, as this seems to be their default option, but that’s an individual preference thing.
What’s your favourite Thai meal? Have you visited Thailand, or Thaikhun, before?