EXPERIENCE CHAOPHRAYA IN THE HEART OF LEEDS
Chaophyraya provides the ultimate Thai dining experience. From the moment you enter the restaurant you sense an oasis of calm and tranquillity.
Large traditional statues discreetly adorn the entrance hall of this elegant and contemporary dining space with its subdued golden hue lighting and exceptionally well planned dining areas that create a sense of privacy for patrons.
The skilful use of gilt and glass gives the restaurant an opulent air whilst the cream leather upholstery is sheer luxury with wonderful fresh floral decorations re-enforcing the Thai image.
A wide wood, glass and gilt staircase leads to the upstairs and the restaurant’s best kept secret an open air terrace beyond the seating area – just the thing for alfresco dining or to sip a cocktail or two on a balmy evening.
Unfortunately it was a little chilly on the evening we visited but we took advantage of the small private outdoor area downstairs to try one of Chaophyraya’s renown cocktails.
My Made in Thailand cocktail came in a bamboo style glass decorated with the green stem leaf of a pineapple. I felt tropical before I even sipped the concoction. Although I have tasted many cocktails with similar ingredients – Havana spiced rum, ginger, pineapple, coconut and ginger beer it was the Lemongrass & Makrut Lime Liqueur that gave it its own particular and very palatable flavour.
Sunbird was my colleagues choice again this had its own particular flavour which was very refreshing with Havana spiced rum, aperol, falernum, pineapple, vanilla, sugar & Grenadine and looked amazing.
We found the staff very welcoming and very knowledgeable about what they were serving but most of all they were eager to please and nothing was too much trouble.
Whilst we perused the menu we nibbled on Khow Kreb Tod – Thai Prawn Crackers with a sweet chilli dip served on a wooden style boat tray.
One of the two sharing platters on the menu was our choice of starter and we were not disappointed by our choice of Ted Sakarn Jay – a vegetarian platter. Each item was sheer culinary indulgence and the platter was very large.
The major pleasing thing about Chaophyraya is the presentation of their dishes – to quote the words in a popular song ‘no one does it better’ in fact their presentation is one of the best I have experienced for a long time in the myriad of restaurants I have reviewed both at home, overseas and afloat on the ocean!
Ted Skarn Jay must have come from the Angel’s Kitchen such was its unusual and deliciously composed flavours. The sweetcorn cakes were coated in a sticky sauce with nuts and were amazing as were the summer rolls so beautifully presented with vegetables rolled into leaves with a very tasty mint dressing with a hint of coriander. On the board there were also crispy vegetable spring rolls, tempura vegetables in a hot and crispy batter and Thai vegetable tacos.
This board had more than enough for two and we retained some of the summer rolls to accompany our main course.
But it was the presentation and fusion of flavours of our main courses that really blew us away.
My colleague decided on Pad Prew Waan Gai- Sweet and Sour Crispy Chicken with Dragon Fruit from the stir fry section of the menu. The presentation was a work of art. The chicken was served in half a Dragon Fruit. The flesh of the fruit had been scooped out into balls and the very tender and generous portion of chicken was accompanied by peppers, onions, tomatoes, pineapple and pomegranate. The dish was flavoursome and the contrast of tastes complimented each other so well.
I opted for Khao Pad Sapparod – King Prawn and Pork with Pineapple Fried Rice from the Noodles and Rice Section.
This for me, was sheer indulgence and the ultimate in Thai dining. There were a generous amount of King prawns in the turmeric egg fried rice that had cashew nuts, onions, peppers and raisins in it. Again top marks for the presentation as it was served in a pineapple boat, topped with lovely crispy shallots and honey pork strips.
I love my ‘heaven on a plate’ my reviewers name for dessert, but this time we both passed on the indulgent menu of desserts and shared scoops of ice-cream and sorbet – the coconut milk ice cream is particularly to be recommended.
Chaophraya has every facet of what a top class eatery should be from its food, ambience, service and its genuine Thai style hospitality.
Chaophraya, Leeds. 20A Blayds Court, Swinegate, Leeds LS1 4AG.
Open every day from 12 noon to 11.00pm.
0113 430 0122 https://www.chaophraya.co.uk/leeds