Alistair Houghton livens up his Sunday with a trip to tasty Thai spot Chilli Banana
ALL THINGS considered, it hadn’t been a good Sunday. It wasn’t the work shift, so much. That was fine. It was the shopping.
My elbow of doom – the left one, since you’re asking – tore its way through another suit jacket on Friday. So, on my way to and from work, I made forlorn attempts to buy a new one.
But me and shopping don’t mix. They never have. I have too many long beige memories of trudging through M&S in Church Street as a prematurely curmudgeonly child. And while M&S might have de-beiged, I still find my soul wafts away amid the suit aisles.
So there I was, indecisively wandering M&S like, well, a lost soul. I couldn’t see a suit I liked, and I couldn’t work out if any of the others fitted. And I still had to choose a restaurant for you, dear readers.
And in the end, I snapped. So there was no new suit – I’m writing this in a pair of jodhpurs cunningly fashioned from binbags, old copies of The Post and some safety pins.
I made a firm decision about the restaurant – I needed an old favourite to warm the cockles of my heart. So Chilli Banana it was.
Thai eatery Chilli Banana opened in 2006 in Lark Lane, where L’Alouette used to be.
When I first spotted Chilli Banana, I was unsure about it. First, there’s its name. Then, its logo of a smiling chilli and a smiling banana. And then, its décor. It’s very gold, a touch lavish and – shall we say – very Cheshire.
But I became a near-regular after getting hooked on its great Thai food and its great service. I hadn’t been for well over a year, but the restaurant was pleasingly unchanged this Sunday as I walked into its warmth from a cold Aigburth night.
M and I were ushered to a window booth and watched as a handful of couples came in to pick up takeaway orders – always a sign, I think, that a restaurant has won the hearts of its neighbours.
My new-found post-suit decisiveness evaporated in the face of the Chilli Banana menu, so I went for the mixed platter.
The highlight was a chicken skewer in sweet and smoky satay sauce, but I also wolfed down the spring onion-studded fishcake, the pork and prawn toast – far more pork and prawn than toast, which is fine by me – and the mini spring rolls.
It always seems rude to eat the carefully carved carrot you get in Thai places. But I did. So there.