Lunching at Nonya
Its easy to get bored of your regular lunchtime offerings but if you work or live in the West End, you are in for a treat...Nonya have introduced ‘Nonya Curry Shop’ every weekday lunchtime, a simple, and very reasonably priced menu you can enjoy sitting in or to takeaway back to your office.
If you're not yet familiar with Nonya, it opened in April of this year on the edge of the Finnieston strip and its ownership tells you everything you need to know. Head chef Gina Hopkins trained in the Le Cordon Bleu culinary school in London and was head chef in the stunning Brunswick House, Vauxhall and The Drapers Arms, Islington. Gina, who had spent a couple of years in Glasgow previously, felt the time was right to come back and start a new challenge. Andy Kelly has previously managed Chinaskis, Kelvingrove Café and Stravaigin and together they share about 30 years experience in the industry, along with John Burns, owner of Bloc+
With Gina's Hong Kong, Malay background, Andy hailing from Hong Kong, and his mum from Isaan in the Northeast of Thailand, they wanted to open somewhere that showcased the food they both grew up, but wasn't yet available in Glasgow. They spoke about what kind of restaurant they would own, and their ideas were exactly the same, as were their restaurant influences...Som Saa, Smoking Goat, Kiln. Their gamble has paid off as Glaswegians are going crazy over their incredible flavours, both in their food and their cocktails.
Keen to try their new lunchtime menu for ourselves, we popped along last week and tried three of the four dishes…Haianese Chicken Rice (£5), Thai Green Curry (£6) and Prawn and Chicken Laksa (£6). Alongside, we ordered our favourite rosé...Ramón Bilbao, which has notes of watermelon and pomegranate. Its light and fresh and works perfectly with rich, spicy dishes.
The Thai Green Curry and Laksa dishes both immediately jumped out because of their fragrant aromas and bright colours. The Hainanese Chicken Rice dish may look a tad 'beige' in comparison, but don't be fooled...this is proper comfort food. The skin-on chicken is poached in its own stock, then the rice is also poached in the same chicken stock, absorbing all that chickeny goodness.
This is a traditional and much-loved breakfast/lunch dish served in Southeast Asia, and one of the national dishes of Singapore. It was also featured in the 'World's 50 most delicious foods' as compiled by CNN in 2011. It is served with slices of refreshing cucumber and two pastes…spicy sambal and a fantastic garlic, coriander and ginger paste which beautifully cuts through the rich chicken flavour with its freshness. If you’re feeling under the weather, this is the dish for you.
If you fancy a trip back to Thailand, the Thai Green Curry will transport you there immediately. Made with coriander root, coriander stock, turmeric ginger and thai basil, this is so unbelievably fragrant, and so warming.
The Prawn and Chicken Laksa is equally aromatic, just with different flavours. You can still pick up with turmeric and ginger, but there is also some fish sauce in there, coconut milk, noodles of course, a boiled egg, fresh chilli and coriander. Its more of a Laksa curry than the Laksa soup, its rich and indulgent, and again, so comforting. This is going to be a winner as we move into the winter months. Who wants a sandwich or a salad when you can grab some coconutty, noodly comfort for just £6?
Lunch is available to sit in or takeaway, Monday -Friday, 12pm – 3pm.