"Phillip, Phillip dear, shall we have Thai for dinner tonight? Perhaps the duck and pineapple curry and some of that lovely jasmine rice"
"Unfortunately darling cabbage, I'm off down the club later with a few of the lads."
"Oh. Yes. I had noticed that your smoking jacket had been laid out. Well, maybe I'll just take the Corgi's and Dorgi's out to stretch their little legs quickly. A lap around the ornamental lake, and then over the road to... oh goodness, what's the name of that delightful place with the live trio. Oh, Mango Tree. Yes. Wait, actually, I need a G&T, Antiques Roadshow is about to come on - I bet they find something of Aunt Margaret's again.
"OOh, Antiques Roadshow? Let's just send one of the footmen over... now did someone say G&T?"
*end dream sequence*
Disclaimer: We were again invited guests of Mango Tree but all of my very, very many thoughts are only ever my own - and I have no real idea of what Her Majesty's favourite local Thai restaurant is - but I do have my suspicions...
A few minutes walk from Victoria Station, a temple to Thai fragrances and flavour sits in amongst the grand columns of Buckingham Palace Road (and overlooks the rather imposing back fence of Her Majesty's garden).
The last time we visited the Belgravia branch of Mango Tree, it was a dark and stormy November night. Having braved the winter rain to celebrate my birthday with me, a gaggle of my favourite ladies and I gathered to raise glasses and enjoyed a little tropical flavour.
As you do, we gossiped travel news over cocktails, caught up on life over noodles and whittled away a few hours as our meal appeared on the marble tables. I've still never been to Thailand myself (a situation that really does need to be sorted stat) and unfortunately can't comment on the authenticity of the flavours, but our fragrant dishes were the perfect antitheses to a crisp autumn evening.
But after a slightly strange experience at Mango Tree's Harrods concession recently, I was a touch hesitant about the invite to re-sample their Thai feast of flavours but in the main London restaurant branch but I'm so glad we did. So one far-too stormy "summer" evening recently, my tame food critic (the one and only Mr Kiwi) and I settled in for a rather delicious date evening.
The menu is extensive - for carnivores and vegetarians alike. We took our time thumbing through the options, narrowing them down to the top 3, discussing their blog potential (I'm joking, mostly) and taking the waiters suggestion of sipping a cheeky glass Chardonnay. A jazz trio set up in the corner to provide the soundtrack for a nicely busy evening.
Eventually we settled on the date-night starter classic of a Mango Tree Platter; a delicious serving of chicken satay skewers served with a peanut sauce, Tod Mun Pla - spicy thai fishcakes served with a chilli dipping sauce, king prawn spring rolls, and duck spring rolls served with plum sauce. Whilst we loved them all, the spicy fishcakes paired with fresh coriander were our favourite - the light texture floating with gauzy whispers of spice.
And then, dessert.
Hilariously, I was beguiled by the Sang Ka Ya Mamuang - mango creme brulee with pistachio biscotti, but the Mr was
The chocolate bomb got the eyes shut seal of approval, but I'm still dreaming of my mango creme brulee with slivers of mango studded through.
I can personally guarantee this might be the best 37 seconds (plus title) of your entire day.
Go, on, watch it again. You know you want to.
We really enjoyed our meal at Mango Tree, and loved the excuse to potter around the Belgravia Mewses(?) beforehand. The restaurant is smoothly modern with quirky Thai accents and a menu that anyone will find something to enjoy.
And whilst researching (the term I loosely apply to flicking through Google) I happened upon an image in the Royal Art collection of several men sitting under a Mango Tree and the fact that J.K. Rowling mentioned Mango Tree in one of her novels, propelling the restaurant to infamous celebrity. It feels like blog fate somehow.
Are you an adventurous eater or prefer dishes closer to home?