November 23, 2005

15 Greek Street, W1D,  020 7437 1071   

Of the four Patara’s in London, this is the one the books say is the flagship and the best for décor.   The ceiling was dropped and there was a central wood pagoda.  The walls were rocky with recesses for candles. 

The four starters were terrific, all between £7-9, beginning with soft crepes that we rolled with crab, prawns, vegetables herbs and a sweet tamarind sauce.  Then there was car-grilled beef and prawns, wrapped in betel leaves and cooked, dipped in a sweet chili sauce.  Assorted rice paper rolls with prawns, crabmeat and five spiced duck with lime and chili sauce finished off our appetizer selection. 

Rather than any main course, we then shared three salads. Each, again, between £7-9.  The first was prawns and lemongrass with crisp beignets and cashew nuts.  Then, a green mango salad with crispy Thai soft-shell crab. And, finally, crispy prawns in pouches on a bed of vegetable juliennes tossed in a sweet chili peanut dressing.

The Thai wine, Monsoon, we had remembered positively from Chaing Mai in Thailand somehow didn’t taste as good here as it did there.  The white was not worth finishing but the red was acceptable. 

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