Introducing Anna Konieczny, one of our TableCrowd members. See how Anna got on at her latest “Thai Dinner in a Mango Tree” dinner, in her latest blog:
The weather not only has a powerful hold over our moods but it completely changes our appetite as well. Summer- we are drawn to food full of light, fresh citrus flavours and vibrant green salad leaves whereas in autumn, we crave the comfort of slower, warmer food rooted in the earth. .. You can only imagine my excitement when I found out I would be hosting my very first TableCrowd dinner at the award-winning Thai restaurant, Mango Tree in Belgravia.
Getting lost on my way to the venue (I wanted to ensure an early 7pm arrival with a must-have pre-dinner cocktail, obviously), the barmaid from the local bar I stumbled upon replied to my rushed:
”I am so sorry but I am a little lost and need some help of getting to…
(barmaid)”…the Mango Tree, perhaps?”
(me) “How did you guess?”
(barmaid) “All the pretty ladies always go there…”
I knew instantly I must be in for a treat!
I walked into the extravagant entrance of the restaurant in a flamboyant style (pure excitement!) to be greeted by three pretty ladies greening at me at the reception, who ushered me to the cosy bar. I went straight for the signature Mango Tree Cocktail; the Thai Lychee Martini. Not recommended for the faint-hearted, it was deliciously sweet with an intended spicy kick to it giving this classic cocktail a fragrant definition. A must-try mix up for any Mango Tree’s newbie.
<Thai Martini; Wyborowa vodka, Gabriel boudier lychee liqueur, fresh lemon grass, thai red chilli, lychee fruit, fresh lime juice and sugar syrup>
Not surprisingly, with such a vast selection of drinks I needed some help from the experienced bar team who swiftly assisted with any of my cocktail-related inquiries. And there were a few…
While alone, I had some time to fully embrace the minimalistic, cosy decor of Mango Tree; the warm colours of red mixed with plush leather seats, showy floral arrangements and fabulously looking bamboo blinds made me feel exceptionally comfortable in this new surroundings. My deep admiration was soon disturbed by Lesley and Peter, the first guests who both joined me for a pre-dinner drink while we were waiting for everyone else to arrive. Chit-chatting and getting to know each other, we were excitingly sipping variety of other signature cocktails while inhaling the superb fragrance of Thai dishes permeating the air.
The time passed by quickly and soon everyone had arrived, we took our seats by the dining table starring at the never-ending menu. I must admit, for such an indecisive food critic as me, the wide selection of Mango Tree’s dishes was more a hindrance than help! On a plus side, it catered for every imaginable taste what was clearly demonstrated on our dining table. Our diverse group of 6 (4 boys and 3 girls – all newbies to TableCrowd experience) got along very well while embarking on the most interesting conversations; we discussed politics ( and even predicted the next recession!), favourite food and even dived into discussing some of our crazy careers ( mainly that of Peter who went from being an artist/ performer, to journalist and ending as a GP practitioner!). Experiencing the TableCrowd for the very first time, I absolutely loved how easy it was to meet new friends in London who share similar passions and zest for life.
Mango Tree may be a once-in-a-while treat if you watch your budget but the one that will leave you with the tastiest memories of some of the most amazing Thai dishes. Just check out some of our selection for the night:
mango tree platter (assorted appetisers including chicken satay, prawn spring rolls, golden minced chicken purse and thai fish cakes, served with satay peanut sauce, sweet chilli sauce and plum sauce)
- A fabulous treat platter for any Thai food lover!
pad thai goong yai (thai rice noodles stir-fried with chinese chives, peanuts, bean curd and bean sprouts in a special homemade sauce, served topped with an egg net and king prawns)
My personal favourite, nothing beats a good pad thai and the one from Mango Tree not only tasted divine, it was presented in the most sophisticated style.
gaeng phed ped yang pon la mai (red curry with roasted duck, grape, pineapple and cherry tomatoes, served in a pineapple bowl)
- Oh dear me…just look at this. Doesn’t it just simple scream ”order me now!!??”. Soft and perfectly spiced, Peter wasn’t disappointed with the choice of his main course that made us all green with envy (he let us tried some though!).
And for those with even half of a sweet tooth…..I present to you the homemade ice cream and sorbet, (Graham’s choice..!)…… now, that is the way to end your dinner!
We partied away with warm smiles on our faces (I am sure the wine had something to do with it!) and promised to get together again soon, for another sociable meet up from the TableCrowd. New friends- here we come!
If you want to meet Anna at a future dinner? Why not connect with her on TableCrowd here.
Alternatively, if you fancy joining one of our weekend TableCrowd dinners you have the choice of either dinner with:
Kerry on Friday 6th for: Thank God It’s Friday at Bellarina or
Tanya on Saturday 7th for: 3 course Indian tasting menu @ Mint Leaf.