SquareMeal Review of
Patara Oxford Circus
Patara may be a chain, but there are very few Thai clichés to speak of. The sitting Buddhas and wood carvings formerly decorating its branches are being steadily (and expensively) replaced with a contemporary palette of greys and marine blues, accented with angular mirrors, feature lights and muted, modern wall art. The menu strives to be ‘authentically different’ and succeeds via innovative twists on tradition, such as pad thai tossed with lobster meat, say, or massaman curry made with fall-apart lamb shanks. Fragrant Thai flavours crop up in unexpected dishes too, with tofu slices glazed in tamarind and lemongrass, before being pan-fried and sprinkled with crisp shallots, for example. Look out, too, for signature dishes, from coconutty dumplings filled with caramelised chicken and peanuts, to ginger-marinated beef fillet stir-fried with chilli, lime leaves and tangy green peppercorns. Delectable vegetarian and seafood set menus and playful cocktails are also excellent.