We wouldn’t suggest a big meal before your massage, but afterwards how about continuing the Thai theme and visiting one of the excellent nearby Thai restaurants. We are sometimes asked for food recommendations – after all, who better to judge authentic Thai cuisine than native Thais! We suggest you steer clear of all the ‘chain’ restaurants and try any of these Thai gems:
Rosa’s Thai Cafe (rosasthaicafe.com/spitalfields)
We remember Rosa’s when it was just a stall on London’s Brick Lane and while it is technically now a chain we’re still counting it (there aren’t many outlets, and Spitalfields was their first site)! It’s less than a 5 minute walk from Thai Kosai, so perfect for your post-massage meal. Alex and Saiphin Moore are the Anglo-Thai couple behind it and Saiphin can often be found in the kitchens at the Spitalfields branch preparing a signature style of authentic Thai with a ‘modern twist’. We argued about the dish to recommend so we’ll go with both – Gaeng Gari Gaeh (lamb yellow curry) and Laab Gai (minced chicken salad)! Among all the local Thai food outlets, Rosa’s has to be our favourite.
In Thai, ‘mudmee’ is a type of naturally produced and dyed silk made popular in the Northeast provinces. The Mudmee restaurant is just around the corner from Thai Kosai, on Artillery Passage. It looks tiny from the outside but don’t worry if it looks busy (it often does), there is some extra seating upstairs. The menu is almost all Thai, with a few dishes from elsewhere in south east Asia including Malaysia and Indonesia. Mudmee is great value for money – we recommend the Kanom Jeeb and the Talay Graprow.
Kinkao Thai (www.kinkao.co.uk)
Brick Lane, more well known for its curries, does feature a few non-curry restaurants, including Kinkao Thai. It’s a little bit further from Thai Kosai, towards the top of Brick Lane and away from the hubbub of the main strip, but well worth the walk. We love the traditional Thai style decor including hand-carved teak tables, and the food is just as authentic.
Located directly opposite Thai Kosai, we guarantee you will find it! The seating area is small so you may decide you’re better off with a takeaway. Pam and Raj Chawla – the owners – have been in the area for ages; they started out selling Thai food in the Old Spitalfields market in 1991 and pride themselves on the affordability of their food. The food is delicious and we would characterise it as ‘Indian/Thai fusion’. Shame it’s only open at lunch times.
Just ask us for directions, we’re happy to point you the right way. (Lastly, if you do go out to dinner after a massage, please make sure to stay well hydrated)