The Queen’s closest Thai restaurant, unlike Buckingham Palace, is simple and fuss-free.
The Mango Tree boasts a prime spot in the city, just a hop, skip, and a jump from Victoria train station and Green Park.
Despite its ritzy location, the place is laid-back with no formal attire required.
It’s a Friday night and the place is buzzing, with a mixed bag of guests feasting away. An Indian family sits behind us while a group of students gaggle away on a table to our right.
One thing that is reflective of the area, is the price. Most mains hover at more than £20, while the starters are around £10.
After recently returning from Thailand myself, it’s hard to snap out of the ‘cheap eats’ mentality.
We dig into an assortment of dishes, with the popcorn shrimp proving a hit.
On the drinks front the cocktail list is extensive – think Bangkok Fizzes and Singapore Slings – but I opt for my standard olive martini while my friend Kate delights in a glass of sauvignon blanc.
The ambiance suits the occasion and as cars whizz by from our window seat we spent several hours catching up on life.
Dipping in and out of our starters, we find the grilled boneless corn-fed chicken thighs are succulent and tasty. The skewered prawns on the other hand are a little dry as we fail to extinguish the flames on our nifty table stove.
When it comes to mains at the Mango Tree, the steamed Chinese kale with garlic and fresh black truffle oil is a winner along with the difficult-to-pronounce Gaeng Phed Ped Yang Pon Lai Mai.
This concoction – simply translated – is a mix of red curry with roasted duck, grapes, pineapple and cherry tomatoes, served in a pineapple bowl – which we pretty much gutted to the core.
But the thing that gets us swiping the plate clean is dessert.
Usually at Thai restaurants the puddings get neglected with fruit being the staple end note. But at the Mango Tree the moreish morsels are a delight to behold.
We were amply full but couldn’t stop ourselves form devouring shovels of gooey chocolate cake, sticky banana sponge and caramel-sauced ice cream.
Favouring more traditional British dishes such as sole fillets and jam pennies, I’m doubtful the Queen has ever hit her local Thai.
But after visiting this place, I’d give it a thumbs up for being an easy spot to hop to, with unfussy dishes and stellar sweet treats.
Mango Tree is located at 46 Grosvenor Place, Belgravia, SW1X 7EQ.
To book a table visit www.mangotree.org.uk.