This review has been A LONG TIME COMING, Thai A Roy Dee has been a favourite for many, as well as one of my own for a while after a work colleague had raved on about it. I’ve been a number of times since and have never been anything but full and very content.
With building work for the Victoria Gate development in Leeds city centre starting, the Twitter air waves were full of concerns on the closure of the restaurant. What quickly followed was a love and outpouring all echoing each other – we’d all be gutted if new premises couldn’t be found and they would have to shut up shop. Fast forward a few weeks and I read they’d found a base across the road in Grand Arcade which was amazing news, not just for me but for all their other fans, and Leeds’ independent food community as a whole!
In it’s current premises it has a restaurant/cafe aesthetic, it has a no fuss kind of interior, and what it lacks in space it makes up for it BIG TIME with its charm, and especially their authentic Thai food.
I quite fancied a starter and to be honest there was a number I could’ve picked but chose their chicken spring rolls (£3.95). They arrived quite pale in colour which first made me think they weren’t crisp, but I was very wrong! The first bite put my mind to rest with the undeniable sound of audible crispness. Filled with chicken, sweetcorn and vermicelli noodles, they were delicate in flavour, the sweet chilli dip is the obvious accompaniment because it just works, plain and simple. I really enjoyed the addition of the sweetcorn in the mix, it livened up what can often be a bland filling.
On seeing my spring rolls, my dining companion Harley Wood started getting a hankering for the Thai Prawn Crackers, which inevitably took over, here’s the proof. Fab they were too!!
Being a creature of habit I picked my usual – Prawn Pad Thai (no peanuts). Yes, I know it’s probably very boring to be picking the same dishes, but it’s a dish I really love and is a good way of comparing different restaurants.
My Pad Thai was particularly good, the prawns were perfectly cooked, juicy and moist. The rice noodles were well coated in sauce without being greasy, with bean sprouts and scrambled egg running through the dish, it made for a very tasty plate of food.
My side dish of vegetables was generous, with a portion size that could’ve classed it as a main dish in its own right! It could be so easy to overcook vegetables and end up with limp, tasteless items on a plate, but these were the complete opposite. All of them cooked so they still have bite and retained their natural flavours, which weren’t overpowered by any of the cooking liquor/sauce added during cooking.
It did take a little while longer for Harley Wood to get her main course of Pad Poh Taek, but boy was it worth the wait! It looked eye-poppingly amazing with so much mixed seafood in one dish, it was certainly one for the most ardent lover of seafood. I tried a bit of the squid which was tender and needed virtually no effort in eating it. The dish was packed with flavour with its mixture of accompanying ingredients including fennel, pepper and chilli. There was no need to ask how good the dish was as the sounds from the opposite side of the table was all the evidence I needed.
Her side order of Pad Broccoli was just as sizeable as my own and for just a few quid is a bargain, also perfectly al dente with a little chilli making an awesome side.
I was so full I couldn’t eat it all, not for the want of trying! There was no way I was going to waste it, so I left with a nice little doggy bag which was quickly devoured as soon as I got home by the other half!
It’s no surprise why people keep flocking to Thai A Roy Dee, whether it’s for lunch or dinner. Their lunch deal (£6.95) is also a massive draw and hopefully I’m going to partake in this soon, as it is too good a deal to miss out on!
Our meal for two was just £28, such a bargain!
It closes VERY soon in order to set up shop across the road at the Grand Arcade, I’ll be back when Thai A Roy Dee are up and running in their new home!
Food: Arguably the best Thai in Leeds.
Service: The staff are always really friendly and helpful.
Atmosphere: What the place lacks in size, it makes up for in its charm.
Value for money: Fantastic value, you’ll be well fed and satisfyingly full!Are you as relieved as I am that Thai A Roy Dee has found a new home in the Grand Arcade? Thai A Roy Dee 112 Vicar Lane Leeds LS2 7NL 0113 245 2174