Som Saa | Thai Restaurant, Commercial Road, London| Yvanne Teo

Som Saa

I only managed to secure a table on my second attempt to try Som Saa, this I managed after deep discussions with the staff to establish when the most successful time to secure a table would be. So in this instance, turning up at 6pm to have our name added to the list for the first dinner sitting was exactly how they described what would happen. With a short catch up drink at the bar we were soon shown to our 6.15pm table. The Som Saa staff get an A* !

Firstly I have to comment that we practically sashayed to our table as our waiter was ever so flirty especially with my friend’s name being Valentina, he repeated her name as if he was making love to it… – Ha! This is definitely a new method of making sure your customers are in a good mood!

Unfortunately for him, my eyes were more drawn to the neighbouring table where food was just being served and I had spotted their whole deep fried sea bass (you can see what I’d choose between, – men or food). But I did notice that he had pulled out the chair for me (though at an angle which was not great) and referred to me as “guest”.

OK enough! We digress. Back to Som Saa and the food!

At the suggestion of Som Saa we chose 4 or 5 dishes between 2 people to share, I wised up this time, and took a picture of the menu, so this is what we had to choose from.

Som Saa | Menu | Yvanne Teo
Som Saa | Menu

The waiter that took our order, thankfully more on the ball of food, helped us with our selection which finally ended up as : som tam thai; yum makeua yao; pla yaang; pad dtok guichai; gaeng hung lay; and accompanied with khao neio and khao hom mali.

I leave you to peer at the image above of the menu to work what each dish consists of!

So with that done, we could look at our surroundings which I noted that there seemed to be some beer vats (?) on the premises, see the image below,

Som Saa | restaurant view | Yvanne Teo
Som Saa | restaurant view

and apparently the at the table behind me was someone famous! Valentina told me that she couldn’t remember his name but he’s in the Game of Thrones, “he’s High Sparrow”, she whispered – this was still of no use to me since I have not watched the series at all – and all I could remember was, he was at the table that ordered that deep fried sea bass! I must have been hungry! 😉

Som Saa originally started as a pop up venue in Climpson’s Arch, and by chance they were reviewed by a well known food critic and scored so highly that they became the place to go overnight. The fear that the quality they had found would be lost if they set up a permanent home was at the back of our minds, but as you can see from the limited menu, the choices have been wisely created, so we were about to find out if they have retained that individualism of freshness and creativeness.

Our salads arrived first:

After much oohs and ahhs, and photo snapping of the dishes, we tucked in and then the rest of the dishes arrived.

I can see why Som Saa is so popular, the food is fabulous! Very fresh with such a distinctively clear blend of spices – as they mention on their menu, you can definitely taste the different texture and flavours (sweet, sour, soft, crunchy, spicy, soothing) which we definitely experienced. We had both jasmine rice and sticky rice with our meal, but I have to say I still prefer just the jasmine rice with the main meal as I associate sticky rice with desserts. Here you can see how the only way they could keep the stick rice ‘fresh’ was to keep it in a plastic bag, admittedly it came in a pretty container.

Being Asian, I am used to eating “Ri–ce” (use hand gestures to create a huge circle representing your exaggerated large plate) so I admittedly was slightly crest-fallen when I saw the little cute porcelain container for the jasmine rice, my mind telling me, “that’s not even enough for one!”

Seriously though, you really don’t need that much rice, plus the rice at Som Saa is free flowing, you can ask for more whenever you want, which we did of course. Being greedy we just had to finish the curry sauce as well… and what better way than with a bit more rice!

Seeing how we polished everything off, our waiter was sure we couldn’t refuse dessert – pandan & camomile tea with kluey thort nahm dan beep and kanon waam dtom gati ordered!

Hugely satisfied, and slightly worried that we had over stayed out first sitting allotted time, we decided to finally depart, with the promise of subsequent visits of course!

Som Saa

43a Commercial Street
E1 6BD

T: 020 7324 7790

Opening hours
MON – FRI: 5PM – 11.30PM
SUN: 5PM – 10.30PM
Som Saa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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