Ekachai – Wandsworth Southside
Shoppers or cinema goers at Wandsworth Southside shopping centre in need of a tasty and, if time is short, quick meal should head up the escalators to Ekachai. It was founded in 1999 by two friends from Hong Kong who were missing their Asian street food.
There are now two Ekachai restaurants in London – one at Liverpool Street and one at Wandsworth Southside, along with concessions in Selfridges London and Birmingham – all serving authentic Malaysian, Thai and Hong Kong street food dishes.
In need of retail therapy we chose Wandsworth Southside. Having spent a happy hour or so pottering in and out of the shops we took the escalators to the first floor, and close by the cinema, discovered Ekachai.
Along one of the walls chefs were working away in their open plan kitchen – everything is cooked fresh to order.
It is an unpretentious dining room with few frills – rustic tables, stools and seats – but hanging from the ceiling an array of rather fun bamboo lamp shades.
Seeing that we were struggling with the menu, manager Eddy, bustled over to lend a hand and advice.
We shared the Mixed Starter Platter which included Chicken Satay, Thai BBQ Ribs, Prawn Sesame Rolls, Thai Fish Cakes, Thai Crackers and a selection of dipping sauces £9.80. Very tasty it was too.
We then ordered the Thai Green Curry (prawns with pea aubergines and bamboo shoot slices) from £6.90, along with Eddy’s special recommendation the Pad Thai – wok fried flat noodles with egg, chives, beansprouts and chicken, topped with crushed peanuts, chilli flakes and a lime wedge from £7.80.
In spite of being extremely full, one of us, who had fond memories of a favourite childhood pudding, managed a portion of banana fritters £3.90 whilst the other sucked away on a natural fruit lolly £1.90.
As we were having a day out we also indulged in a bottle of wine, from £17.50 (glass from £4.20).
Next visit to Wandsworth Southside – shopping or cinema – we both agreed that we would most certainly go back to Ekachai – the food was fresh and good, the service was pleasant and it was nice to see a bustling, busy restaurant with other obviously happy diners. www.ekachai.co.uk.