If you are anything like my boyfriend and I then you will be sure to love a fantastic little restaurant that we found in West Hampstead called The Banana Tree. Serving a tasty range of Indochinese (pan-asian) food, their motto is to “spread the love of great food” which after a spontaneous yet fantastic meal there I was more than happy to do!
We decided to drop in on a busy Friday evening with the desire to try somewhere new for our weekly ‘date night’.
Upon arrival, we were greeted and promptly offered a table which we chose near the back of the restaurant. The kitchen is at the front of the building, offering diners a clear view of the busy staff preparing the very tasty meals.
Despite it being busy, we were not rushed at all as we made our choices from the menu, opting for Filo rolls and Chicken Satay starter with Seafood Kari and Crispy Fish for the mains. The drink of choice was Red Saigon, a fruity and freshly prepared cocktail.
After making our choices, we sat back to relax after a long week in the perfectly laid back environment. With subtle lighting which changed gradually to suit the darkening evening it was easy to lose track of time and genuinely enjoy the offerings of the restaurant which seemed to be frequented mainly be couples.
Our starter arrived within a few minutes and was as hot and delicious as we could have wanted. The food was very well presented and provided a good introduction to the quality that we could expect from the rest of the meal. Everything tasted fresh, we were immediately pleased by our choices.
Tables were cleared in an efficient manner across the restaurant which seemed to be a standard part of the high level of service that staff maintained during the evening. Despite it being so busy, staff were always friendly and had the knack of making us feel that we mattered – which in itself mattered! 🙂
The main course proved to be perfectly cooked and prepared with a balance of spices to complement the tastes without being overwhelming. Despite being full from our starters and main course, we had enjoyed it so much that we just had to take a look. We opted for the Balinese Pulut Hitam (black rice pudding and coconut ice cream) and just one more cocktail, the Dirty Thai Guy.
This proved to be a brilliant choice, served warm and provided with two spoons (forcing me to have to share ;-)). The coconut ice cream suited the pudding which was a sizeable portion.
It is definitely fair to say that we had a great evening at The Banana Tree. The food, service, quality and atmosphere all contributed to a perfect evening which was exactly what we were looking for. Just one (very small) recommendation… Maybe consider an extension of the existing cocktail menu to offer more choice to the customer. Otherwise it is a restaurant that is sure to see me as a return customer. To the team at The Banana Tree, thank you for a lovely evening!
Address: The Banana Tree, 237-239 West End Lane, NW6 1XN
Phone: +44 (0)20 7431 7808