Suda Thai opened in the summer of 2011, and is a casual Thai café format from the owners of the upmarket Patara chain. Situated in a modern development in between Leicester Square and Covent Garden, Suda is a two storey building seating up to 150 diners at a time. There are no tablecloths, and the lengthy menus appear as laminated cards. There was a short wine list, with wines such as Faultline Sauvignon Blanc at £31.50 for a wine that retails at around £8.40, but beer is the natural accompaniment to Thai food.
Som tam (£6.50) had shredded papaya with nice texture, lettuce, cherry tomatoes and a pleasantly spicy chilli dressing (12/20). Fried squid were not chewy, and the batter was crisp (13/20). Sea bass in a red curry sauce (£10.50) had fish that was cooked through properly though it was farmed fish with little flavour; however the red curry sauce had a nice balance of spices (12/20). Pad Thai noodles (£9.50) had quite good texture, the prawns cooked properly (13/20). Bak choy (£5.50) stir-fried with oyster sauce (12/20). Egg fried rice (£2.75) was fine.
Service was reasonably efficient, though when I ordered the waiter asked what number item it was rather than recognising its name. However this is a café rather than a smart restaurant. The bill came to £39 a head including beer. This seemed to me acceptable for what was a quite capable meal. Suda is evidently aimed at the Busaba Eatthai market, and seemed to me pretty successful, less precious than Busaba, with competent Thai food.
RT @Caterertweets: Chris Eden of Driftwood to join Gidleigh Park as executive head chef https://t.co/HM3HU6Gs3R https://t.co/mmzRpdGp5I