First stop on my London day of eating, Brixton. Brixton Village Market, formerly known as Granville Arcade, was mostly vacant until a couple of years ago. A regeneration project is seeing it gradually fill up with a variety of interesting eateries, which are generally getting very positive feedback - see here for more information.
One of the latest openings is Kaosarn, a small Thai cafe located at the Coldharbour Lane end of the arcade. I was lured in by the thought of some decent Thai food after the abomination I had the other week. I ordered chicken stir fried with rice, chilli, holy basil and a fried egg (Kao pad kra pao or somethingorother in Thai), and water. Iced tap water was supplied without question or suggestion of the bottled stuff.
I enjoyed eating this. Sweet, salty and hot, with added richness from the runny egg yolk and texture from the crispy bits of egg white. The chicken wasn't overcooked and the rice was just right. My only criticism was that it needed a bit more chilli and a bit more basil. In summary, nothing mind blowing just good well cooked food, just what the doctor ordered on a damp, miserable day.
The staff are also worth a mention, as they were lovely. The waitress looked worried on delivery of my food, and explained that the fried egg was the Thai style of serving it. She seemed to be concerned I wouldn't like the look of it. I proved my satisfaction by eating the plateful in about five minutes. The older guy doing the cooking also left the stove when I was leaving to ask if I'd enjoyed the food and if it was too hot. I told him a bit hotter would be great and he was almost apologetic. I reassured him that I'd enjoyed it anyway and he seemed genuinely pleased.
I hope this place is a resounding success. The food is good, it's reasonably priced (stir-fry was £6.90 plus tip), and the people running the place are genuinely keen to impress.
7.5/10 (bonus 0.5 for being so nice!)
Brixton Village Market