Eating Out West Midlands

Review: Sabai Sabai, Harborne

27th January 2014


It’s taken me a while to get this review written up….just before Christmas, a couple of my oldest friends L & J made their way back from London and Paris respectively to the motherland of Birmingham for a few days with their families for Chirstmas. This gave us the opportunity for a bit of a catch up, so decided to head over to Harborne, where another of our friends, S, lives for a Thai feast. None of us had been to Sabai Sabai before and its somewhere thats been on my radar for a while – I’d heard mixed reports, some full of praise and some a lot less so. I was intrigued to give it a go, after all, it couldn’t be as bad as my last Thai meal at Thai Edge!

For the Monday before Christmas, I thought it would be busier, but there was a steady stream of custom, and I really quite liked the interior. The waiting staff were friendly and accommodating, even when we all took an AGE to make any decisions about what we wanted because we were too busy nattering. Most of us were driving so stuck to soft drinks but J tried a cocktail which she enjoyed. They had an interesting selection of cocktails, I particularly like the sound of the Ginger and Chilli Margarita. (Maybe next time!)


We started of with some crackers with a sweet chilli dip which had a nice kick to it. Starter wise I went for the Yam Thai Spicy Salad with Beef. This was a salad with onions, cucumber, carrots, tomatoes, spring onions, coriander, celery, pineapple & fresh lime dressing. It was fantastically spicy and the beef was tender and served still pink in the middle. I love Thai Salads and this was a really good one, a great balance of flavours and really light and fresh. My friends S, J and L had Satay Gai – Tender strips of marinated chicken served with a peanut sauce & Thai style salad, Kamon Jeeb – Thai Steamed Dumplings with Chicken and prawns wrapped in wonton wrappers, topped with fried garlic and sweet soy sauce and Thod Mun Pla – Thai Fish Cakes with sweet chilli sauce. The overall consensus on the starters was positive. I tried a little of the chicken satay which was juicy and tender and the peanut sauce very moreish.


Thai Salad with Beef







Both L and I went for the Ped Makam Jarn Ron Roast Duck with palm sugar and tamarind stir fried with onions & then topped with dried Shallots. The sauce of this dish was really lovely – sweet and a hint of spice, but disastouorly, there wasn’t nearly enough of it. The duck itself was a little overcooked for my liking but the fat was nicely crispy and the crispy shallots were a good touch for extra texture. S had the Pad Jarn Ron Chicken with sesame oil, Chinese whiskey, sweet basil, fresh garlic, fresh chilli and mixed vegetables. She thought the flavours again were good, but strangely there was possibly too much sauce with this – the dish was swimming in it. J went for a Geng Ka Ree – Yellow Curry. She enjoyed this dish, and it was a vibrant colour but a touch spicy for her tastes, where yellow curries are generally not that spicy. We had a few accompaniments of rice, noodles and some pakchoi and my Thai sticky rice was perfectly cooked.


Chicken and Duck Sizzling Platters


Yellow Curry

Overall we enjoyed our meal, and we were too busy chatting away to worry about minor details like the proportions of sauce to meat and veg too much! A good neighbourhood Thai restaurant, but the search for that Thai place that blows me away continues…..

268 High Street, Harborne, Birmingham B17 9PT

Disclosure: We paid for our own meal, and all opinions expressed are honest and our own


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