Tamarai, Covent Garden, London – restaurant review

167 Drury Lane, WC2B 5PG
Tube: Holborn

The scene: Tucked away in a corner of Covent Garden rarely seen by tourists, Tamarai is a revelation. It resembles a multi-storey car park that has been taken on as a brand extension to Pimp My Ride (and I mean this in the nicest way possible).

The grub: We have multiple starter sharing plates including beef satay with wasabi yoghurt and the Scottish scallop shu mai dim sum basket, which was disappointingly heavy on the shu mai. Our mains of Duke of Berkshire pork belly, with hoisin onion sauce and Thai green curry are faultless.

The quality continued with an Aisan twist on a classic – a crème bruleee flavored with coconut, plus sticky toffee pudding served with a banana. Divine. A nice touch is the series of “extras” that come between courses, such as a Thai soup and sorbet.

Bill please: Starters rung in at between £9 and £18, mains between £15 and £19, dessert set us back £23.50. We polished it off with a 2009 Chilean Valdivieso Sauvignon Blanc for £27. 

Verdict: Great for a birthday treat, as the venue turns into a club once the eating’s done.


– Jim Zambrano