Picture the scene. Out with Ruth, a romantic meal cut off from the main Moseley drag on Woodbridge Road. A window table, private, candlelight, very nice. When suddenly out of no where a group of drunken men walk past and decide to pull faces at the window and shout out things you hear on a Saturday night, breaks the romance and a scene remembered to this day.
Then picture the scene when for Ruth’s Birthday meal we arrive at the same restaurant and see a table for two free in the same window, hearts miss a beat and words I’m not sitting there pass through our mouths.
Fear not there are also free tables inside so we sit comfortably away from the door and aforementioned window. That’s the story of one of our many visits to Sabai Sabai in Moseley. One of three Thai restaurants owned by Torquil and Judee Chiswick. The others in Harborne and Stratford Upon Avon have their own identities, their own regulars. We though love the intimacy and bijou feel of the original, (10 years old) it’s perfect for couples and for a little romance.
The Bohemian ways of Mosley Village dictate that the decor is as rich with colour as the food. There’s a good buzz about Sabai Sabai and it’s popularity desires you book on a weekend.
Having recently won the Best Oriental Establishment at The Food Awards, held in Manchester, Sabai Sabai’s star is ascending. The recent opening in Stratford Upon Avon is the first out of Birmingham and a hit already with the theatre crowd.
And then the food. So often Thai food can be so richly spiced that Fireman Sam needs to be called out to rescue the choking Norman. But here delicate flavours are contrasted and compliment perfectly the booming spice that makes these dishes whisper fire.
Kanam Jeeb Pak starts me off. Steamed mix veg dumplings topped with crispy garlic and served with a delicious sweet dark soy sauce contrasting perfectly the depth of flavour in the dumplings which are perfect for dipping. Balanced flavours, crisp and firm a delight.
Sabai Sabai have a huge choice for Vegetarians from stir frys to a recommended Phad Thai and a tempting set menu for the undecided. My choice the Gang Ka Ree, yellow curry, was a colourful and vibrant veggie slice of heaven. Golden fried Tofu simmered in coconut milk with potatoes, onion, mixed veg in a mild and sweetly spiced yellow curry sauce. It’s a deeply satisfying main course with just the right amount of sweetness from the coconut milk to pronounce the rich creaminess which though milder than some of the dishes packs a punch on many levels with its vegetables and sophisticated delicacy.
I ate it with Kao Pad Kai (Egg fried Rice) which worked beautifully with the outstanding curry.
We also shared some delicious Pak Choi in garlic sauce, stir fried perfectly. A joy.
I have found desserts are sometimes hit and miss in Thai restaurants. An after thought, an add on that they feel they must put on the menu because we dictate we need a pudding after the meal in the west. Much like some Indian desserts many are underwhelming.
The distinctive green colour of the Pandan leaf makes a vibrant pancake into a satisfying end to the meal. It offers a wonderful subtle flavour to the gentle coconut. Traditionally a breakfast sweet originating from Bali it proves to make a fantastic dessert and well recommended to quench the spicyness of the previous courses. A winner.
Sabai Sabai in Moseley is a lovely restaurant. The food is top notch, and with invigorating flavours and a cosy feel it’s a recommended dining choice in Birmingham for Vegetarians.
The only critique I can find is that the service can be erratic (not listening, waiting for drinks, a tad rushed) and either very good or a bit noneplused. Though always friendly and at times efficient it’s just best to put up with it as it’s a minor quibble and doesn’t detract from a lovely experience.
The Cosyness and intimacy of the venue is an asset and I was pleased the music volume had been lowered (as once it was so loud it was more club like than romantic restaurant). Sabai Sabai in Moseley is one of the most romantic spots to eat in Birmingham and perfect for a date. Just remember though if you are seated in the window to watch out for interruptions, can it be funny? though with Thai food this good who can fail to miss out on this real taste of Thailand.
Thanks for reading,
We enjoyed a bottle of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc with our meal. A good though pricey wine choice at £29.95.
We paid for a food and drinks in full and why not I’m happy too.
Sabai Sabai Moseley, 25 Woodbridge Road, Birmingham B13 8EH.
Sabai Sabai is part of The Gastro Card and you can receive 10% off food bill Sunday-Wednesday.
To buy a card see link here:
Veggie Foodie Tip:
Have a glass of top quality wine at the excellent new independent wine bar Cheval Blanc in Moseley Village before dinner. Cocktails also served.
I enjoyed a glass of Red, Le Gourmand Domaine du Janicer from France.
Ruth a superb Gin Martini.