One of Broadstone’s newest restaurants is Tiien – an elegantly modern, contemporary Thai establishment situated on Moor Road
I visited just after the snowfall in mid-January with my girlfriend, Charlee. We were warmly greeted by managing partner Ning, who showed us too our table next to a warm radiator.
Complimentary ‘Thai-style’ prawn crackers were served with a sweet chilli dip. The crackers were excellent; crunchy, prawny, and delicious – similar to Chinese ones but with a slight hint of chilli.
Ning explained how Thai cuisine is traditionally eaten in groups, with each person selecting a dish with the intention of sharing it with others. This is a wonderful concept, and allowed Charlee and I to try various dishes on Tiien’s sizable menu.
The mixed starter was recommended to us, and consisted of chicken satay skewers drizzled in a coconut sauce; sesame prawn toast; Thai-style fishcakes; a selection of spring rolls; and battered chicken wings. These were served with a satay (peanut) sauce, a cucumber salsa and a little more sweet chilli. The flavours were exceptional with true, authentic aromas bursting through. I thought the fishcakes in particular tasted lovely, with the bitterness of the lemon grass complementing the sweetness of the peppers and garlic. Charlee raved about the chicken satay, and said the coconut drizzle was an expert touch.
Following this we had an Asian soup course. I had the prawn Tom Yam – a traditional spicy soup with mushrooms, lemon grass, chilli and lime juice, and let me tell you – wow! The prawns were big and succulent, the mushrooms were cut into quarters, which gave it plenty of texture, and the soup itself was firey. Brilliant!
Charlee opted for the Wonton Soup, which she thouroughly enjoyed. Thin pastry cases filled with pork, served with onions and beansprouts and other various spices. The flavours of the two soups were completely different. The Tom Yam is definitely something to kickstart the party in your mouth.
For mains – I ordered the Thai-style chilli beef, served with peppers, baby peppercorns, and a selection of deep-fried Thai basil leaves. The hotness of this dish was just right for me, but far too hot for Charlee. Ning assured me that the spices can be altered accordingly to meet individuals’ needs, so just ask the friendly staff at Tiien for your preferred heat.
Charlee insisted on trying a famous Thai green curry (served mild), along with a special fried rice. Ning also suggested we try the pak choy, a type of Chinese cabbage. It was served in a thin sauce, so my initial thought was that the vegetable would be soggy. But to my surprise, it was fresh-tasting, with a satisfying crunch – an ingredient we will be trying to source for our ‘home-made’ take on pak choy.
The green curry and the special rice were equally as exceptional as the rest of the meal; the curry was so creamy, with tender slithers of chicken nestling underneath the signature drizzle of coconut milk.
The Broadstone restaurant is a smaller version of its big sister at West Cliff in Bournemouth, but its 70 covers still offer a cosy, romantic meal for two, as well as being a perfect party venue.
Judging by the look of the restaurant with its unusual revolving door at the entrance, I think this new addition in Broadstone takes dining to a whole new level. After sampling the menu, I can honestly say that I have been wowed by Thai cusine.
Tiien now sits firmly at the top of my list of lavish restaurants.
What an evening!
Review by Kris Davy © 2013