If there’s one thing you should know about me, it’s how much I bloody love Christmas; anything festive and I’m all over it (apart from Christmas cake, mince pies and stuffing funnily enough). I think that’s why I probably subconsciously steered my career towards marketing all those years ago because in this industry, you get to start the Christmas countdown in August and that’s exactly how I found myself previewing the upcoming festive menu at Chaophraya last night.
For someone who loves Christmas so much, my palette is very much bah humbug when it comes to festive foods. I think it’s the overuse of candied peel and star anise… or maybe the avalanche of raisins that seem to be poured into every single winter recipe and if you’ve read my post about The Bagelry, you’ll know that I cannot abide a currant. Shudder. Alas, my aversion to festive delicacies by no means deterred me at Chaophraya as the new Christmas menu was as marzipan-free and authentically Thai as ever.
Probably one of my all-time favourite places for traditional Thai food, Chaophraya has been a regular hangout of mine for a while now so I knew the grub was gonna be good. However I was looking forward to experiencing the food in taster-networking-event-stylee to see if it still matched up to its usual lofty standards. Tick, tick, tick – all as perfectly presented and utterly delectable as it would come on the plate and washed down with a refreshing flute of fizzy Elderflower Prosecco.
Canapes upon canapes were handed around the beautiful Palm Sugar Lounge venue (which is attached to the stunning Liverpool ONE restaurant) as cocktail making masterclasses and DIY spring roll demos played out in the background. Props to the Chaophraya team for such a fabulously organised event (I’ve attended some absolute pantomimes in my time) but less about that and more about the food glorious food, right?
The Chaophraya Christmas menu is pretty extensive, like kid is a candy shop spoilt for choice kind of extensive but on the night we managed to get our chops round samples of the:
Thai Green Turkey Curry with butternut squash and sticky rice – a little festive interpretation of the standard Thai Green Chicken Curry and so, so tasty.
Fried Tofu in a Thai chilli sauce with those weird little mushrooms that look like they’d give you hallucinations – my first time trying tofu and I’ll definitely be going back for more.
Thai Vegetable Tacos which were red curried and wrapped in a mini coconut flour taco – a drool-worthy alternative to the Thai Chicken Tacos which are also IN.SANE.
Deep fried Sweetcorn Cakes with sweet chilli sauce. Moreish to say the least… Oops.
Vegetable Spring Rolls – standard choice but cooked to absolute crispy, golden perfection.
Some other things you can catch on the Chaophraya Christmas menus over the coming months are Steamed Pork Dumplings, Papaya Salad, Crispy Pork Belly with hot basil leaves, Chicken Pad Thai and a Mango Meringue Roll. All of those are part of the Christmas Express Lunch Menu which will be running at 2 courses for £15 and 3 courses for £30.
If you’re after something lighter over the coming months ahead of the annual festive binge, head for the Christmas Bites Menu which also features a whole host of vegetarian options that even had a meat-lover like moi turning my head. This menu comes in three separate tiers (depending on the number of dishes included) and priced at £10 per person, £16.50pp and £19pp.
Alternatively if you fancy fattening up and packing on some extra… layers in good time for the inevitably cold weather, get yourself involved with the two set Christmas menus: Chiang Mai (£36.50pp) and Phuket (£30pp). Whatever you decide to go for though, do make sure you book in advance because this is a popular little pit stop amongst locals and visitors alike.
Fancy something more traditional? Check out the Fire & Ice Christmas party nights at the Titanic Hotel.