Restaurant Review: Baan Thitiya in Hertford

Baan Thitiya supplies a warm welcome on a cold evening for food and drink editor Richard Cawthorne

About the restaurant

On a chilly Hertford night, Baan Thitiya is a beacon of welcome. Sparkling white and occupying a prominent corner site, the former pub has settled well into its new role with its claim to provide ‘the very best of authentic Thai cuisine’.

Atmosphere and decor

The former bar is still in place but otherwise you’d be pushed to recognise the restaurant for what it was. There is a sense of bustle and the white-walled (again) dining area bedecked with Thai artefacts is on two levels, creating several cosy nooks and crannies.

Service

Thai restaurants have built an enviable reputation for consistently good service and Baan Thitiya carries on the tradition. There was a warm welcome, our smiling waitress was attentive but discreet and food was delivered speedily.

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The menu

Typical again – a total of more than 70 dishes, including 15 appetisers, four spicy hot and sour Thai salads and five soups, then curries, meat dishes, duck specialities, seafood dishes, nine chef’s specialities and a choice of four set meals. Favourites include tamarind duck (�8.95) and crispy fried fish topped with hot chilli and garlic sauce (�9.95). If you don’t see something to like, you’re probably dead.

To start

The selection plate of vegetarian appetisers (�9.95 for two people) was a find and a bargain – spring rolls, whole baby corn wrapped in rice pastry and crispy fried, plus vegetable tempura and more, all served with sweet and sour plum sauce, proved an ideal introduction to what was to follow.

Main courses

From the list of chef’s specialities, I chose black pepper lamb (�11.95) with plain boiled rice (�1.95 extra). This was tender chunks of meat saut�ed with vegetables in a warming garlic and black pepper sauce, served sizzling, just the thing for cold weather. Across the table, fried king prawns (�12.95) took the vote thanks to a mouth-watering recipe – prawns lightly dusted with flour then saut�ed with garlic, dried black pepper, coriander root, spring onion and chopped chillies. Egg fried rice (�2.50) was the chosen accompaniment.

Desserts

The Dragon Ball, from a selection at �4.95, proved irresistible - fried ice cream wrapped in filo pastry with a drizzle of chocolate sauce. Or you can choose from various banana dishes, or ice creams at �3.50.

The experience

Good food, good value, good service. My only complaint is that I can’t pronounce the Thai names for some of the dishes, Goong Pad Med Mamuang Himmaparn being just one.

The cost of this dinner for two was �52.75 including two glasses of wine at �4.25 each. Service was extra.

This is an independent review featuring a restaurant selected and experienced by our food and drink editor. The restaurant was not told it was being reviewed.

Baan Thitiya

34 St Andrew Street

Hertford SG14 1JA

01992 587706

www.baan-thitiya.com

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