Colonel Tan’s (Chapel Street, Prahran) is one of our favourite places to go for a few drinks and some tasty thai food on a Friday night, so we figured it was about time we gave the place a bit of a writeup!
For those not in the know, Revolver (and therefore Colonel Tan’s) is owned by the same people as Cookie, the awesome CBD bar-slash-thai-restaurant – and Cookie’s chef, Karen Batson, is in charge of the kitchens here too.
The typical Prahran / Windsor style guide is well and truly enforced: Nana’s tables, old school chairs, a bunch of well worn reclaimed couches, and a few plastic doilies thrown in for good measure. There isn’t a great deal of tables (not surprising given the size of the kitchen – the word “small” doesn’t do it justice!), so if you’re hoping for a Friday or Saturday night walk-in at 7:00pm, expect to be disappointed.
The drinks menu contains a great little selection of beers from all over the world, and some pretty decent cocktails too. Ritsy didn’t have the best end to her work day, so she chose the Negroni ($16), and I thought I’d try a Singapore Sling ($16). Both of them were great – nothing fancy, but very well balanced.
For entree, we had the Corn Fritters with Sweet Chilli ($7.50) and the Sweet Potato and Cashew Dumplings with Chilli Soy ($11.50). The Corn Fritters are a favourite of ours – the crispy batter just hanging onto the sweet corn kernels, and the sweet chilli sauce (I think it’s home made) has a nice hint of honey in it.
The potato dumplings were a new treat for us – the fried dumpling skin nice and gooey, and the dipping sauce – ketjap manis with chilli slices – went quite well.
My main course was the very reasonably priced Bangkok Bolognaise ($12.50) – a combination of rice noodles, minced beef, fresh tomato, chilli, and spring onions. Whilst I never had anything like it when I was in Bangkok, this is the sort of dish I would search for – it’s a really nice take on the traditional Italian variety.
Ritsy had the Thai Green Chicken Curry ($13.50), which comes with steamed rice and a small salted egg salad (which also contains ginger and chilli). I got to eat the salted egg salad as Ritsy doesn’t particularly like it – it’s not as good as the one at Cookie (which also has dried shrimp and a lot more chilli), but it’s nice nonetheless.
All up the meal was only $77, which is great considering how full we were, and even better considering $32 of that was for drinks. It’s better value than it’s big city sister, Cookie, but the menu doesn’t have anywhere near the same amount of variety (again, considering the size of the kitchen, that’s perfectly fine).
For some reason, Colonel Tan’s didn’t make it into The Age Good Food Guide this year. We’re not sure why, as The Age’s Epicure gave it a pretty good review in January this year. In any case, Ritsy and I highly recommend it!