Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Phad Thai

41 Broadstone Road,
Stockport SK5 7AR

Main dishes between £4-6

Reddish - one of Stockport's many down-and-out suburbs - is an unexpected place to find a Thai restaurant, let alone a good one. Having been burned by my last visit to a Thai restaurant in an unlikely locale, I was not expecting much despite my parents' rapturous expressions when they talked about their previous visits. Not only does Phad Thai serve up classic dishes, it also branches out into those from north-eastern Thailand on its E-Sarn menu. Sadly, my hunger got the better of me and I ordered before I knew this.

The soup - a hot and coconutty Tom Kha - was packed full of buttery button mushrooms and chicken that had been cooked in the broth.  The beef Massaman curry packed a meaty punch with its thickly tingling sauce, toothsome meat, uncompromisingly large chunks of vegetables, and balanced use of heat and more subtle spices. The inclusion of potatoes that had absorbed a lot of the sauce added an extra dimension to an already excellent dish.  The Penang curry was hotter but did not obscure the underlying flavours that tasted like more than just a shake of the Five Spice bottle. My mum's pineapple curry not only contained chunks of fresh-tasting pineapple but the sauce also had a pineapple sweetness that avoided being cloying.  We ordered egg fried rice to accompany all of these dishes, which contains a tasty mix of spices and finely chopped vegetables.

After such a successful meal, I have cast asunder my preconceptions about what a Thai restaurant in Reddish might be like. While Reddishers might look as though they are auditioning for Trainspotting 2, I hope that such an unprepossessing area can continue to support this a gem of a restaurant that would be able to charge double the price if located in snooty south Manchester.

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