Last week I told you about Dinings Restaurant and how it was London’s best kept secret because it didn’t have a website blah blah. This goes to show that I don’t know what I’m talking about and you should never, under any circumstances, listen to me because Dinings, they do have a website.

So if you can please do me a favour and pretend that I never said anything about “best kept secret” and that right this moment, I’m saying it for the first time:

Siam Central: London’s Best Kept Secret.

For realz.

I did my homework this time and googled Siam-Central-London-Restaurant-Thai-Food-Website in every combination and permutation you can imagine and nothing came up. I’m 99.9% certain they don’t have a website but hey, if anyone finds one, please do share because trust me, they deserve the recognition.

The fact that they are my “local” has nothing to do with anything. Living in the West End, we’re surrounded by numerous and sundry restaurants, a significant number of them Thai. There’s Thai Metro (bland), Busaba Eathai (no desserts!) and even Soho Thai, which I thought was ok. But nothing actually comes close to Siam Central ~ not in taste, price and consistent delivery of a brilliant product.

Siam Central also has a unique “Thai tapas” menu ~ a collection of small dishes to share, including tamarind duck (topped with tamarind and palm sugar), flash fried tofu (with fried slices of garlic) and chicken & prawn toast (pictured below).

Other interesting tapas style dishes include weeping tiger (seasoned beef sirloin with soy chilli sauce), spiced salted squid and Singha beer battered seafood.

Mains at Siam Central are more traditionally Thai ~ we shared a pineapple fried rice, duck panang curry, chicken pad thai and a chilli & basil stir fry with beef.

One word I can think of to describe their food is flavoursome, because that’s what it is – nothing is ever bland and everything is infused so beautifully with herbs and spices that you just breathe in the goodness before diving in for a full mouthful that doesn’t. ever. disappoint.

Another great thing about Siam Central is their choice of desserts, from fried ice cream to coconut crepes (pandan crepes filled with dessicated coconut), chilled mango mousse and even fresh mango with sticky rice when the season allows (ie not right now in this never ending winter we’re having).

I always order the coconut crepes because my tastebuds dictate me to. I do have to admit though, a couple of times they’ve cooked the crepe a touch too long so it’s almost crispy (bad) but done right, this is one of those desserts that make you feel like you’re sitting by the street side at Patong Beach, slurping up deathly hot tom yum soup, and cooling your flaming mouth on the local sweets.

Anyway no website – tick. No PR to speak of – tick. But a queue every weekend night? Surely people who know know, and we’re onto a good thing. Make sure you make a reservation if you plan to dropping by, especially on a weekend.

And enjoy!

ps. I’m also a fan of Thai 33, down by Old Bailey.

Siam Central
14 Charlotte Street
London, W1T 2LX
0207 436 7460

Siam Central on Urbanspoon

12 Thoughts on “Siam Central: another of London’s hidden gems. For realz this time.

  1. Interesting. A friend recommended this place recently but I didn’t think much of it. Looks really good.

    Anyway I disagree, London’s best kept secret is Maltings Cafe. This place is second and Dinings is third, I suppose πŸ˜›

    • Haha WELL I haven’t been to Maltings Cafe yet so I’m just gonna have to see if it’s a gem too! But fine, Siam Central can be second and Dinings third πŸ˜‰

  2. Gorgeous food, I love the look of that Tamarind Duck. I am very envious of you having these places on your doorstep.

  3. I’m not a huge fan of Thai food but there was a couple of months when my friends kept dragging me to Siam Central every alternate week or so. Thought the food was tasty but a bit oversalted for me.

    I await your next “best kept secret” πŸ˜‰

  4. Hi Catty,

    So I finally went to try Siam Central after a long hiatus based on your recommendation…and I agree with you completely, they do a really good Pad Thai! It even got a thumbs up from my Pad-Thai obsessed sister/expert, who put it in first place of the best Pad Thai’s in London (No 2: Tampopo; 3: Busaba) Personally I like the Drunken Noodles and Pad See Ew better. I was a bit disappointed with the starters though (thai fish cake tasted like shop-bought; salted squid was dry and stingy portions) but the tom yum soup and papaya salad made up for it. I went back again and am planning a re-visit soon! Maybe I’ll bump into you one day!!

    PS If you ever get a craving for Sardinian food, I would recommend Sardo on Grafton Way (near Warren St) – the spaghetti with bottarga and linguine with crab is very addictive!

  5. PSS The banana fritters at Siam Central deserve a mention because they are very good banana fritters πŸ™‚

  6. Sarah: I know, it’s a curse and a blessing to have all these places nearby. And yes the tamarind duck was delicious and a surprisingly large serve!

    Wild Boar: LOL Dinings was an “accidental” Best Kept Secret so really, there’s only ONE. Well, for the next couple of weeks anyway πŸ˜‰

    AYSHA: Yeh actually you’re right some of the starters (tapas) can be small portions but then you have something like the tamarind duck and it’s like a main size… bizarre! But agreed – overall everything is always good, and we keep going back. I’m sure I’ll see you there one day πŸ˜‰

  7. Oh my what great pics, great review!!

  8. Now this does look like a place worth bookmarking for a future visit. Especially if it does a good Pad Thai. Like a Margherita Pizza, Tiramisu or Bangers and Mash, it’s a really good indicator of the quality of cooking because getting the simple things right is often pretty difficult.

    Loving the look of the biohazard-green pancakey things – i assume they’re the crepes. If so, I need to go there as soon as…

  9. sweetlife: thanks! *blush* πŸ™‚

    Grubworm: I totally agree with you – I gauge a good Thai restaurant by its pad thai and Siam Central definitely does a good one! And yes, those biohazard pancakey things are pandan and coconut crepes πŸ˜€

  10. Right, this is where I’m going tonight.

    If we must talk about hiddem gems then i vote for rochelle school canteen.

  11. Pingback: Food Friday: Siam Central, Charlotte Street, London | Bristol vs the world

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