Category Archives: Russell Square

Thai Dream

Located in a tiny alleyway off Boswell St near Queens Square, with dim lighting and barely any decorations around the entrance, Thai Dream is about as nondescript as it gets. The look of its exterior coupled with the fact that dimly lit places with names like “Thai Dream” in Thailand usually provide other types of services rather than table service, did make me hesitate before walking in. In addition, my experiences with Thai food in Bloomsbury hadn’t been the best of late (read my Busaba review). However, I took a leap of faith, and opened the door.

Like a typical family run restaurant, the inside is simple, quiet, and warm. There’s one waiter, a middle-aged, perpetually smiling Thai man, and every now and then he’d yell Thai instructions at who I presume is his wife in the kitchen downstairs, who would of course yell back telling him to watch his tone. This man is so sweet though, he even told me, “Don’t come for dinner, lunch is cheaper no need to spend more money”. Their menu offered every Thai dish one could want, from tom yum soups to noodles to fried rice to curries. And the best part…almost everything was priced under £6!!! I decided to order one of their set lunch options, which includes any starter and any main course for £8.90 altogether. Being a cold and rainy day, I went with hot Tom Yum Soup, and a beef Pad Thai (noodles). The soup was…PERFECT. With lemongrass, kaffir lime, chilli, and mushrooms, all mixed together in absolutely delightful ratios, this soup satisfies every corner of the pallet. I wouldn’t mind for it to be freezing and rainy every day just so I had a good excuse to keep coming back for this King of Tom Yums. The Pad Thai, was almost identical to Pad Thais I’ve had at homes in Bangkok and Koh Samui. The hardest thing to get right about the Pad Thai is the fish sauce, but these guys nailed it, with its wonderful taste infusing itself into every bite. The texture of the noodles and thickness of the beef pieces were also on point, and just at the end of every mouthful, the lime would kick in just as it should.

It’s a pity Thai Dream isn’t more well known, however after reading this I hope you will help change that, by taking many a lunch trip here for a true taste of Thailand!

£18 (2 people)

17 New North Street, Bloomsbury, London, WC1N 3PJ

Thai Dream: Website / Menu

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Burger & Shake

On a cold, rainy afternoon I found myself on a long (and a premature calorie- burning) hunt for a hamburger in Bloomsbury, and after multiple refusals to give up and resign myself to the unholy fate of yet another lunch at Pret, I stumbled across Burger & Shake.

With 90s pop music, pictures of pretty women on the wall, and a lonely bald man sitting on the next table, Burger & Shake has all the makings for a typical American burger joint. The restaurant is quite small, resulting in the beautiful fragrance of freshly grilled beef patties engulfing the entire space, making it quite the appetising atmosphere.

I ordered a cheeseburger, opting for it to be cooked medium. In addition, although not helping in my goal to get a six-pack, I decided to give in to temptation and ordered a large french fries. I guess its good my girlfriend lives in Los Angeles. The quality of the patty wasn’t the best. However, the restaurant covers this up to a fair extent by drowning the patty in a sauce that can be best described as a tangier thousand island. While there was nothing wrong with the taste of the sauce, it does make the meal a sloppy and greasy affair (guys, a first date here wouldn’t be the smartest of ideas). The buns were toasted to perfection, with a soft inside and slightly crispy edges. The fries were a bit too oily, resulting in hardly any of the potato flavour coming through.

Overall, I think Burger & Shake is a great option, but only if you, like me at the time, don’t know that there is a Gourmet Burger Kitchen right around the corner.

£23 (2 people)

47 Marchmont St, London WC1N 1AP

Menu

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