Bolton Thai restaurant Thailand Cafe shoots to fame after rave review from celebrity chef John Torode

John Torode at Bolton Food and Drink Festival on Sunday

Pong Rujipong and wife Ying Jadepreeya

First published in News The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author by , business editor

A LITTLE Thai restaurant has shot to national fame thanks to sizzling reviews from Masterchef star John Torode.

The Australian chef, aged 49, has taken to Twitter to rave about the Thailand Cafe, in Bridge Street, Bolton, where he dined on Saturday night after being turned away from neighbouring tapas eatery La Salsa, which was fully booked.

After sampling the fare cooked by owner and chef Pong Rujipong, Mr Torode told audiences at his Bolton Food and Drink Festival cookery demonstrations he had enjoyed “the best chicken larb I’ve tasted outside of Thailand”.

On Twitter, Mr Torode yesterday retweeted Bolton Cllr Chris Peacock, who wrote: “After glowing recommendation from @JohnTorode1 have tried Thailand Cafe on Bridge Street in #Bolton for lunch. Was brilliant! Do try it.”

Mr Torode then tweeted: “Brilliant . . . let’s make them famous.”

The star was staying at the Holiday Inn opposite the cafe on Saturday, ahead of his eagerly awaited demonstration at the record- breaking festival, when he wandered over to see if there was a free table.

Mr Rujipong, aged 51, opened the cafe only three months ago with his wife, Ying Jadpreeya, aged 27.

He had little time to be star-struck by his surprise visitor. Mr Rujipong said: “The cafe was so busy, we could not to chat to him. He ordered spare ribs, chicken larb, green curry and sticky rice.

“When he had finished the plates were empty. He told us it was delicious and we were highly delighted to have pleased him.”

Asked by an audience member where he ate in Bolton on Saturday night, the chef said: “I was staying at the Holiday Inn, so I went to the tapas place nearby.

"I couldn’t get in there, so I went to this little Thai place next door. Hand on heart it was the best Thai food I have had outside of Thailand. Maybe it is Bolton’s hidden gem.”

Demand for menus from Thailand Cafe has been so high since the weekend that Mr Rujipong is having to have more printed.

He moved to the UK 14 years ago from his native Bangkok and ran a successful outlet in Manchester.

He and his wife decided to move to Bolton and thought the Bridge Street cafe was perfect for their business.

Mr Rujipong said: “We love living in Bolton. The people are really friendly and they seem to like our food a lot.”

La Salsa owner Abdul Simsek said he was sorry he could not give Mr Torode a table. He added: “When he came in, I was in the bar.

"One of the staff asked if we could give him a table, but we were fully booked. I would have loved to have given him a table, but it would not have been fair to the people we were expecting.”

Comments (14)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

10:56am Fri 29 Aug 14

The Running Man says...

"One of the staff asked if we could give him a table, but we were fully booked. I would have loved to have given him a table, but it would not have been fair to the people we were expecting.”

Could be the costliest knock-back you've ever made! That said I love your food and maybe it was Torode who missed out? Whatever the case, congratulations to both yourselves and the Thai restaurant for making a run down bit of Bolton a place worth visiting.
"One of the staff asked if we could give him a table, but we were fully booked. I would have loved to have given him a table, but it would not have been fair to the people we were expecting.” Could be the costliest knock-back you've ever made! That said I love your food and maybe it was Torode who missed out? Whatever the case, congratulations to both yourselves and the Thai restaurant for making a run down bit of Bolton a place worth visiting. The Running Man
  • Score: 45

12:07pm Fri 29 Aug 14

steveG says...

The best Thai restaurant I've been to has to be the Henighans Bottom Bull on Bury new road.
The best Thai restaurant I've been to has to be the Henighans Bottom Bull on Bury new road. steveG
  • Score: -10

12:15pm Fri 29 Aug 14

giraffe89 says...

I'm glad he didn't get to eat at La Salsa - it was awful last time I went.
I'm glad he didn't get to eat at La Salsa - it was awful last time I went. giraffe89
  • Score: 22

12:38pm Fri 29 Aug 14

Lancashire always says...

The Running Man wrote:
"One of the staff asked if we could give him a table, but we were fully booked. I would have loved to have given him a table, but it would not have been fair to the people we were expecting.” Could be the costliest knock-back you've ever made! That said I love your food and maybe it was Torode who missed out? Whatever the case, congratulations to both yourselves and the Thai restaurant for making a run down bit of Bolton a place worth visiting.
Totally agree i love the tapas there i have been many times and never been dissapointed i will try the Thai though as it hard for me to know what is authentic .A great recomendation.
[quote][p][bold]The Running Man[/bold] wrote: "One of the staff asked if we could give him a table, but we were fully booked. I would have loved to have given him a table, but it would not have been fair to the people we were expecting.” Could be the costliest knock-back you've ever made! That said I love your food and maybe it was Torode who missed out? Whatever the case, congratulations to both yourselves and the Thai restaurant for making a run down bit of Bolton a place worth visiting.[/p][/quote]Totally agree i love the tapas there i have been many times and never been dissapointed i will try the Thai though as it hard for me to know what is authentic .A great recomendation. Lancashire always
  • Score: 6

12:53pm Fri 29 Aug 14

idav_uk says...

Lancashire always wrote:
The Running Man wrote:
"One of the staff asked if we could give him a table, but we were fully booked. I would have loved to have given him a table, but it would not have been fair to the people we were expecting.” Could be the costliest knock-back you've ever made! That said I love your food and maybe it was Torode who missed out? Whatever the case, congratulations to both yourselves and the Thai restaurant for making a run down bit of Bolton a place worth visiting.
Totally agree i love the tapas there i have been many times and never been dissapointed i will try the Thai though as it hard for me to know what is authentic .A great recomendation.
Haven't tried this place but I will do now. We're blessed with Thai places in Bolton. Thai Kitchen at the Bottom Bull is a Belter too. Not sure why people persevere with Nam Ploy mind.
[quote][p][bold]Lancashire always[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]The Running Man[/bold] wrote: "One of the staff asked if we could give him a table, but we were fully booked. I would have loved to have given him a table, but it would not have been fair to the people we were expecting.” Could be the costliest knock-back you've ever made! That said I love your food and maybe it was Torode who missed out? Whatever the case, congratulations to both yourselves and the Thai restaurant for making a run down bit of Bolton a place worth visiting.[/p][/quote]Totally agree i love the tapas there i have been many times and never been dissapointed i will try the Thai though as it hard for me to know what is authentic .A great recomendation.[/p][/quote]Haven't tried this place but I will do now. We're blessed with Thai places in Bolton. Thai Kitchen at the Bottom Bull is a Belter too. Not sure why people persevere with Nam Ploy mind. idav_uk
  • Score: 8

5:30pm Fri 29 Aug 14

keggard says...

Thai in bottom bull on Bury Road is awesome well worth a visit
Thai in bottom bull on Bury Road is awesome well worth a visit keggard
  • Score: -3

6:05pm Fri 29 Aug 14

stacyandshane says...

Lovely for such an unknown gem to be discovered in Bolton. Hats off to John Torode for trying "make them famous". Bit sad that all the comments on the article couldn't have just said congratulations and a huge well done to Mr Rujipong instead of pointing out their own favourite Thai restaurant. I wish him and his wife every success and we will shall be visiting him very soon.
Lovely for such an unknown gem to be discovered in Bolton. Hats off to John Torode for trying "make them famous". Bit sad that all the comments on the article couldn't have just said congratulations and a huge well done to Mr Rujipong instead of pointing out their own favourite Thai restaurant. I wish him and his wife every success and we will shall be visiting him very soon. stacyandshane
  • Score: 29

7:11pm Fri 29 Aug 14

hal pel says...

It's just a shame that there's nowhere in Bolton knocking out decent traditional English grub. I do love Thai food though. I'll certainly be trying the cafe soon.
It's just a shame that there's nowhere in Bolton knocking out decent traditional English grub. I do love Thai food though. I'll certainly be trying the cafe soon. hal pel
  • Score: 5

12:38am Sat 30 Aug 14

united99 says...

hal pel wrote:
It's just a shame that there's nowhere in Bolton knocking out decent traditional English grub. I do love Thai food though. I'll certainly be trying the cafe soon.
There was !!! It was called Alice's fish and chips it shut down people stop going.
[quote][p][bold]hal pel[/bold] wrote: It's just a shame that there's nowhere in Bolton knocking out decent traditional English grub. I do love Thai food though. I'll certainly be trying the cafe soon.[/p][/quote]There was !!! It was called Alice's fish and chips it shut down people stop going. united99
  • Score: -6

1:07am Sat 30 Aug 14

Chrome1 says...

I couldn't wear a tie never mind eat one. Sorry I'll get my coat.
I couldn't wear a tie never mind eat one. Sorry I'll get my coat. Chrome1
  • Score: -3

9:25am Sat 30 Aug 14

vix11 says...

Will have to give it a try. LaSalsa being full says it all too. Wonder how many were in his party...you would have thought with him being in industry that he would know to book first!! Glad Thailand café got some recognition though...we need more diverse eateries....especial
ly when you cant get to their home countries to experience their culture. Keep up the good work 😁
Will have to give it a try. LaSalsa being full says it all too. Wonder how many were in his party...you would have thought with him being in industry that he would know to book first!! Glad Thailand café got some recognition though...we need more diverse eateries....especial ly when you cant get to their home countries to experience their culture. Keep up the good work 😁 vix11
  • Score: 3

11:04am Sat 30 Aug 14

Rememberscarborough says...

Chuffed that Bolton has such quality places to eat but have to seriously wonder why it takes a bloke from the other side of the world to find it.

I'm hoping our council are asking exactly the same questions....
Chuffed that Bolton has such quality places to eat but have to seriously wonder why it takes a bloke from the other side of the world to find it. I'm hoping our council are asking exactly the same questions.... Rememberscarborough
  • Score: 5

1:47pm Mon 1 Sep 14

goldie47 says...

love la salsa....always great food...so no wonder fully booked on a saturday...however..
.will def give the thai place a try in the near future....congrats to both
love la salsa....always great food...so no wonder fully booked on a saturday...however.. .will def give the thai place a try in the near future....congrats to both goldie47
  • Score: 0

1:47pm Mon 1 Sep 14

goldie47 says...

love la salsa....always great food...so no wonder fully booked on a saturday...however..
.will def give the thai place a try in the near future....congrats to both
love la salsa....always great food...so no wonder fully booked on a saturday...however.. .will def give the thai place a try in the near future....congrats to both goldie47
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree