Dorset Foodie Feed were recently invited to sample the new menu at Kala Thai – Bournemouth’s new Thai restaurant. Serving up the regions more traditional Thai dishes – old favourites like Pad Thai and Gaeng Massaman curry – this new dining venture is only a few weeks old and already it is a huge success. I have already been back for more!
A couple of things occur to me when I arrive – first of all, hope.
The fact that new businesses are emerging on our high street post lockdown is grand. These are tough times to be in the restaurant industry and despite the delays, owners and chefs, Tom and Wally, have overcome these issues and have established a lovely environment to enjoy good Thai cooking.
Furthermore, I like the location. I like the buzz. The restaurant is nestled into the edge of Horseshoe Common and it’s a busy part of town. So whether you are dining solo and enjoy people watching, or eating with friends, it is a lively open place to enjoy lunch or dinner.
First impressions are good – the service is extremely welcoming and the staff are more than happy to guide you though their favourites from the extensive menu. The interior is spacious but intimate whilst offering private booths in the heated space outside.
The evening starts off with some cocktails – naturally. The Lychee mojito is a nice spin on a classic and the Thai blossom garden is a pleasant pallet cleanser. The drinks menu is extensive and good value for money. Drinks were closely followed by our starters of freshly prepared Duck spring rolls and Kala prawns. They were both great and delivered on ‘flavoursome crunch’ – very moreish!
Pleasingly, the food at Kala Thai is freshly made from scratch in the visible, all Thai kitchen. We order a few dishes to share. You cannot go wrong with a well-made Pad Thai – I feel nostalgic for my backpacking 20’s spent roaming the food markets in Bangkok when presented with this all time favourite. It was good and despite being on the sweeter side, it was packed full of tender prawns and a tasty place to start.
If you like your Thai food spicy-as-hec, I would recommend that you ask for more spice to be added to your meal when you order as the dishes are mildly spiced and I personally like that extra kick.
Next, the Khow Suey – chicken and egg noodles in a coconut spicy curried sauce with lime shallot. This was a hearty bowl of spicy zing. The chicken laid on top was charred and crunchy yet tender inside.
The highlight of their menu for me was their Gaeng Massaman curry, served in a deep creamy broth – very rich and soothing. This dish does not come with rice so I ordered a jasmine rice bowl to share with my date. We also share a refreshing Som Tum Thai, a Papaya Salad – one of my favourites.
Feeling fuller than I think I have ever been, we take a slight moment to look at the desserts with the belief that we can make room for the Banana fritter. We make room and order one to share. I am so glad that we did. It was delicious, light, and the perfect finish. Probably the best banana fritter I have ever had.
Prices range from £6.95 to £14.95 for an evening meal. Extensive cocktail list and wine offering, with house wine specials starting from £11.95.
Kala Thai currently have an excellent offer on Lunch from 12pm until 3pm – 1 course £7.95, 2 courses £9.95.
127 Old Christchurch Road
|Invited by PR company?||Yes|
|Guest of chef/restaurant/owner?||No|
|Restaurant/outlet knew ahead we were bloggers?||Yes|
|Was the meal complimentary from the restaurant?||Yes|
|Any complimentary items provided by restaurant/outlet?||No|