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A Classy, Thai Dinner at The Tall Lemongrass in Crow’s Nest

The Tall Lemongrass differentiates itself from the usual Thai restaurants by offering innovative, modern dishes in addition to the regular classic Thai dishes. Their menu is even split into different sections offering ‘Classic Thai’ or ‘Thai Favourites’ such as spicy stir fries, fragrant curries and Pad Thai noodles; and ‘Trademark’ or ‘Modern Twist’ such as their signature Yum Aubergine Stack (fresh, herb-filled chicken mince between layers of deep fried aubergines) or garlic spicy lamb with deep fried eggplant.

The restaurant is located on Willoughby Road, on a strip packed with restaurants and eateries. The spacious interior was very elegant with dim lighting, dark furniture and beautiful Thai décor. The restaurant was fairly full for an early Thursday evening and the atmosphere was relaxed.

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Chef and Owner Wendy Khouphongsy travels to Thailand annually to be inspired to create menu ideas and visit street food stalls to ensure she is offering customers the most authentic Thai experience. She told us that she used to cook with her mother in Thailand as a little girl, and the dishes she creates are an amalgamation of her mother’s recipes and her own. Her passion for her restaurant was evident as we spoke to her, and the result can be seen in her ability to keep her restaurant running for 5 years on a busy and (what I imagine to be) competitive restaurant strip. Wendy has also opened a second, smaller restaurant in Haymarket called ‘The Small Lemongrass’ offering takeaway lunch and sit down dinners.

We were treated to the Recommended menu which included the following:

– Mien Kumm: sweet radish, ground peanuts, cooked prawns, freshly chopped galangal, lime, ginger and red onion wrapped in an egg net and betel leaf.
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– Larb Ped on Witlof: shreds of roasted duck, toasted rice, mint, coriander and a hint of fresh chilli on a chicory witlof leaf
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– Yum Aubergine Stack: chicken mince, mint, coriander, fresh chilli, lime juice and fish sauce between slices of deep fried aubergines and topped with four pieces of cooked prawn.
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– Penang Ossa Boccu: Slow cooked beef penang curry
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– Pork belly: crispy deep fried pork belly with a caramelised top
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– Pad Thai: fried noodles wrapped in egg netting and served with a chilli powder and crushed nuts.
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Each dish was perfectly cooked and tasted fresh and tangy. Boyfriend and I enjoyed the Larb Ped on Witlof and the Yum Aubergine Stack because they were both packed with plenty of flavour and tasted fresh and healthy.

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We had a great time at The Tall Lemongrass and thought Wendy was humble and lovely. The staff were kind and patient and the dishes came out so quickly that we barely had any room left on our table!

I highly recommend The Tall Lemongrass for a high end Thai dinner with a group of friends or for a date. Best to go there for a proper sit down meal rather than get takeaway as you will miss out on the service and proper presentation and care that goes into each of Wendy’s dishes. The menu is also extensive with their classic and modern dishes catering to everyone, even the picky eaters. It’s high end Thai with a modern twist, and I promise you that you will love it!

Note: Thank you to Wendy at The Tall Lemongrass for hosting us, and to Elyshia at Missy Mischief for inviting us. We had a wonderful time and will be back there soon!

Maadz xox

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