Expatriate Australian chef David Thompson has confirmed his return to Sydney after more than 15 years with an outlet for his Thai street food restaurant, Long Chim.
A Sydney version of Long Chim, which has branches in Singapore and Perth, has been a open secret for several months. Today, Thompson revealed the location, a former storage basement underneath 10-14 Martin Place, with an opening date of mid August.
“So now you know. It’s been an open secret for a while, but now it’s out and it’s official,” the chef said.
For Thompson, who earlier this year was given a lifetime achievement by the World’s 50 Best Restaurants for changing the face and reputation of Thai food globally, it’s a welcome return to the city where his career began 25 years ago in a Newtown pub with Darley Street Thai. He went on to launch Sailor’s Thai, now under different owners, in The Rocks in 1995.
He left Australia to open Nahm in London in 2001, and within a year, it became the first Thai restaurant to receive a Michelin star. Nahm Bangkok was named the best restaurant in Asia in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants and is currently ranked at 22 on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants.
The 190-seat Sydney branch of Long Chim will feature a large open plan kitchen, cocktail bar, and a mix of intimate dining alcoves, communal style tables and counter seats.
Long Chim means to “come and taste”.
Thompson says the restaurant aims to capture the excitement of Bangkok street food.
“Long Chim is intended to be fun – ‘sanuk’ as the Thais say – with food and drinks that everyone loves,” he said. “Our menu will have the dishes that many Thais miss the most when away from home.”
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