Situated in the bustling shopping village of Wahroonga is an authentic Thai restaurant called Charmed by Hanuman Thai that has easily become one of my favourites to visit.
The flexibility of Charmed by Hanuman Thai allows me to bring my friends there for Pad Thai and Massaman curry and great conversation, or order takeaway delivery with ease on the Eat Now website, bringing Thai street food at its best to my very own doorstep (which is perfect for my quiet nights in involving Harry Potter and a glass of wine).
With two similar restaurants in St Ives and Lindfield, the success of Charmed by Hanuman Thai is proven through their most recent opening in Wahroonga.
I remember seeing the tiny store for the first time in early 2014 when the restaurant was merely a small kitchen with seats and tables in the same room the size of a small cafe. Don’t get me wrong, the decor was beautiful with a traditional Thai painting of a woman and dragon-type animal stretching the back wall and its gorgeously small dim lights.
I couldn’t help but become taken with the cute little metal drinking cups and the tea lights creating a romantic atmosphere that still managed to work when the restaurant was full of diners and bustling with chatter and the noise of the open concept kitchen. Upon my first dining experience, I can still remember how impressed I was with the waitresses’ attentiveness and speed, and of course, the delicious food. I felt spoiled; authentic Thai street food was now so easy to access around the corner from where I live. Compared with other places such as Absolute Thai and a few other restaurants in Hornsby and Turramurra this is definitely the one that is worth visiting even if you live further away.
My most recent dining experience, I had decided to check out the new restaurant with some friends since it had undergone renovations. We saw that they had extended their small restaurant into a double-sided store, with the takeaway orders section in the back closest to the large Wahroonga car park (on Redleaf Lane), and the dine-in restaurant on the other side facing Redleaf Avenue. They’ve added a fully operational coffee machine and barista so diners have the option of a coffee or tea after their meals as well as an impressive cocktail list. However, the only thing they could improve on is the decor in this extension – the back wall is covered with decorative plates that don’t seem true to the image in the rest of the room with a semi-rustic and Thai street feel.
The food however, is another story. They have added speciality entrees and mains making the dining experience slightly more formal.
We snacked on duck rolls in plum sauce as our entree which was delicious, but could have been made slightly bigger and maybe less like the conventional spring roll with duck instead of meat and vegetables. For the main course we had the Hokkien Mee with sambal chilli and red curry with chicken.
The Hokkien Mee with sambal chilli was perfect, with just the right amount of chilli (to fellow spice lovers – my tolerance for spice is very high, but they do adjust the heat to order), and had an assortment of vegetables, prawns, tofu and my favourite – crispy pork slices. The pork was tender and managed to melt in my mouth while being deliciously crispy also.
The red curry had a great consistency; not too thick and not too watery. I could easily taste the coconut cream which was the best part. Our dining experience was perfect with no complaints to make with the same professional and attentive staff. Other great dishes to try would be the Pad Se Ew (rice noodles in soy sauce), Pad Kee Mao (rice noodles in basil and chilli) and of course, their signature Pad Thai.
Charmed by Hanuman Thai is open for dine in and takeaway dinner every day from 5pm – 10pm.
Restaurant Name: Charmed by Hanuman Thai
Address: 19 Redleaf Avenue, Wahroonga 2076
Phone: 9487 2189 or 9489 5610