3 ISSUES FOR JUST £3 Subscribe to Sussex Life today click here

Thai Terre in East Dean - restaurant review

PUBLISHED: 10:17 26 May 2015 | UPDATED: 15:58 06 November 2017

Archant

In the quintessentially Sussex village of East Dean lies an authentic Thai restaurant that warrants a special trip

The village of East Dean is a quaint delight, a cluster of flint wall houses scattered over the countryside like Scrabble tiles. There’s a traditional village green edged by a whitewashed pub, The Tiger Inn, and opposite the pub there’s a Thai restaurant.

Thai Terre, which has 48 covers and an upstairs function room, is doing a bustling trade on a Thursday evening. The huge window, which looks out onto the green, is crowded with a splendid array of orchids and there is a cheery atmosphere, with locals greeting the staff with hugs. It is not a grand place – the restaurant delivers to homes in the local area and in the summer, people often take their food outside to eat on the grass – but it has earned a reputation for excellent food – so much so that on TripAdvisor it is rated number three of 320 restaurants in Eastbourne, despite not actually being in the town.

Thai Terre specialises in the cuisine of the north-eastern region of Thailand, and there’s a comprehensive list of chef’s specials. Impressively, the restaurant’s website includes detailed information on allergens present in each dish; invaluable for coeliacs or those with intolerances.

My first choice was soft shell crab (£6.95). The batter was as delicate as a whisper, with not a hint of oiliness, despite being deep-fried. And the crab itself – soft because it had recently shed its hard exoskeleton – was quite as good as the last time I ate it, on the banks of the same Mekong River that runs through Thailand. My husband tried Saa Lai Dim Sum – parcels of minced prawn and crab wrapped in seaweed, at £5.50. They had a fiery meatiness to them that was infinitely satisfying.

Soon after finishing our (official) starters the warm and smiling waitress brought us a surprise: four little dim sum, immaculately fashioned into birds and fish. The little steamed dumplings contained prawns of some excellence, and actually I could have found room for, say, a dozen more.

But in fact the next dishes to grace the table were tiny scoops of mango sorbet, the tropical sweetness wiping the slate clean for our main courses. Without realising it, we had both ordered the chefs’ variations on our usual Thai choices: for me, Gung Choo Chee, which saw fat prawns robed in a creamy red curry sauce enriched with coconut milk, and Carl’s choice of the Special Thai Terre Curry – with monkfish in a green curry sauce. They were both very reasonable at £11.95 and both, like the Pad Thai we so clearly didn’t need, but which we manfully ladled down our necks, were magnificent.

I have a friend who was a teacher in Thailand for many years, and who still yearns for its food and culture. When she next visits Sussex, I will take her to 
Thai Terre. Something tells me she’ll feel right at home.

Thai Terre, The Green, East Dean, East Sussex; 01323 423 956; thaiterre.co.uk

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Sussex Life visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Sussex Life staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Sussex Life account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Food & Drink

The 2018 Celebration of Sussex Life Awards are fast approaching, with the ceremony taking place at The Grand Hotel, Brighton on 25 October. We’re delighted to announce our finalists…

Read more

Whether you’re looking for fine dining, pub food, a romantic meal for 2 or a taste of something from further afield, eating out in Sussex really has something for everyone. Here’s our guide to the best local restaurants and pubs

Read more

Laura Paton has found a great restaurant off the beaten track in Sidlesham – but keep it under your hat

Read more

Treat yourself, family and friends to lunch and afternoon tea with a visit to one of these fantastic Sussex tea rooms

Read more

There are some fantastic restaurants and cafés in Eastbourne serving up delectable food and catering for all tastes. We round up some of the best…

Read more

The market own of Horsham is home to some delightful restaurants and pubs. We round up some of the best

Read more

Is The Curlew’s new team bringing it back to its former glories? We went to find out

Read more

From glorious gardens to stunning seascapes, and not forgetting fabulous food, we bring you the best places to eat this summer

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Latest Competitions & Offers

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory


Job search in your local area



Property Search