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good pan-Asian food in Maida Vale: SEW9

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good pan-Asian food in Maida Vale: SEW9

magnolia | Feb 16, 2001 04:41 AM

Things are looking up a bit in maida vale. I ate at Southeast W9, right across from the Maida Vale tube stop.

It has decently priced dishes from Thailand, malaysia, Laos, cambodia...etc. Owner (though I don't know whether he is also the chef) is Vatch Bhumiputri (sp?) who has apparently published several cookbooks on Asian cuisine.

The food was not at all greasy, generous portions, well spiced. I had fried potatoes with ginger and mushrooms which were divine - in a thin, tempura like batter; barbecued pork with egg noodles which was a far cry from the brown glop I usually get at a typical Chinese takeaway for the same price (£5-6); crunchy, fresh spring rolls that did not drip grease when you bit into them...and sticky rice.

Decor is white and spare, with some Mondrian-esque 'crossword puzzle' artwork on the walls.

Service was a bit ditzy but well-meaning. Seems like a quirky neighborhood hang-out - the guy who lives in the flat above kept popping in and out every 10 minutes, and a shopkeeper next door came in apparently (I was eavesdropping but not very effectively, so this story could be totally off) to warn one of the diners that his motor bike was being eyed by some disenfranchised youth (i.e. middle class 15 year olds with nothing much to do) which I thought was really kind and neighborly of her. So needless to say, the wait staff was a bit pre-occupied with superfluous goings-on. But I'd go back - and I'd definitely take away. No dish seemed to be over £7.

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