Like many other lucky people, I was invited to visit Zaap Thai Street Food as it opened its doors on the 18th of May for a quick look round and some free nibbles, popcorn (this I still don’t understand, so if anyone can link popcorn to Thai food please let me know!) and a drink, so I feel a quick food news update is in order!
First of all, Zaap is a nice new concept for Leeds. Sure, there are a few amazing street food options in Leeds Trinity Kitchen but this opening is perhaps hinting at the rebirth of the old China town area into a nice new foodie part of the city. Location-wise, Zaap is based just near to Ho’s, located inside the beautiful Grand Arcade, making it a perfect location for any theatregoers who are going to watch a performance at the Grand Theatre.
In terms of the concept, the most impressive aspect for me was the real desire to replicate the look and noise of Bangkok. This is something you feel as soon as you enter the restaurant, with the wonderful collection of random cars, street signs and a nice layout overall that is conducive to chatter and social gatherings. This is what a street food concept restaurant really needs.
Food-wise, the range of the menu seems good, with a mixture of Chinese, Japanese and of course Thai food. I tried some of the krub krib nibbles and while items like spring rolls are fairly tricky to do badly, the sour sausage was nice and flavourful. In terms of value, the pricing seems about right for the level of food on offer, but I would say that if you order two or three dishes each in a small party then the bill will start adding up quite quickly, so be warned! I have many a time been caught out by the cost of my greed at tasty street food places!
Finally, the staff themselves seemed friendly and keen to help you out. I was quickly informed that no peanut risks were present when I checked about the nibbles (although I personally would like to see a nut style sign on the menu to avoid people getting caught out) and the little touches like putting my drink in a mini bucket seemed to lift the place from being hum drum to a good quality eating experience.
All in all, while this was a brief first impression without a proper taste of the menu, I would certainly say that Zaap is worth trying out for all you Leeds (and beyond!) foodies.
Categories: Food News