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“Pretentious and non-authentic Thai” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Chinwag Eathai - CLOSED

Chinwag Eathai
High Street, Christchurch, New Zealand
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Cuisines: Asian, Thai, Fusion
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Large groups, Special occasions
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Reservations
Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
“Pretentious and non-authentic Thai”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2011

I've read some of the other reviews on this place, and can only surmise that they have been written by people who have never: a) been to Thailand or b) been to an authentic Thai restaurant!
The menu is slightly odd- to the point that it requires (apparently!) an extremely in depth explanation by the waiter at the start of the meal! I should add, that the staff and the service were excellent, but really, the restaurant isn't that "special" that you need to be led through the whole "dining experience"!! It was not traditional Thai food on the menu- duck and pork featured heavily- with only some chicken dishes and one beef salad.
We had the massaman chicken- which was unlike any massaman chicken I've ever had before (not in a good way!) The chicken was actual full boned chicken pieces, there was boiled egg and roast potatoes in the sauce. The flavour wasn't too bad but it just wasn't authentic. We also had their variation on the Pad Thai- which had smoked chicken pieces (quite nice) and 3 prawns. Overall, it lacked flavour.
I guess this restaurant would appeal to a certain clientele (perhaps the "cool crowd" of Christchurch). But for a couple of Aussies who just wanted a nice Thai meal $62NZD for 2 pretend-Thai mains was just not that impressive!

  • Visited June 2011
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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57 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
daylesford
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
“Great place to stop and unwind”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 6, 2011

After 5 hours on a train this was the perfect place to go to. A local shop keeper recommended the restaurant and it was a short walk from our hotel. We sat at the bar and drank a couple of well made cocktails. These were made care and attention to detail. We snacked on some rice paper rolls, pork wontons and some delicious spinach rolls. The service was attentive and we were guided through the menu with well versed staff. A Booking is a must.

  • Visited January 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Sublime experience from beginning to end”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2011

Dined here the day they reopened for the new year (after a brief 'aftershock' invoked break I think). The decor and atmosphere is smart, warm and comfortable and the service was exceptional - from the bar staff who knew their cocktails and the wait staff who went out of their way to make sure we were happy with the wine. When we inquired about a recommended wine, we were given a taste - when we needed a pair of reading glasses, they had a pair available. Small things that I've seen elsewhere, but surprising nonetheless.
The food was clever, tasty and satisfying I could not fault the Spinach leaf with roasted coconut, peanuts, garlic, chilli and lime, and the Caramelised pork hock with chilli vinegar is a piece of heaven - make sure at least one person in your party has it (make it you!)

Visited January 2011
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Los Angeles, California
1 review
“Lives up to its reputation”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2010

Have been wanting to come to Chinwag Eathai for a long time now after so many friends have recommended it. I was worried that after having had it built up in my head to be so fantastic, it would never live up, but it was just as every bit exceptional as I had been told.

The food was absolutely delicious (whether it's authentic thai or not I'm not the person to ask), well presented & came very quickly considering how busy they were. The place really had a fantastic atmosphere, the place was really pumping & it seemed like everyone in the entire place was having a really good time.

Service was exceptional & the maitre'd was great getting us a table very quickly! Without a doubt one of New Zealand's best restaurants. Can't wait to go back!

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Ottawa, Canada
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Awesome Thai food, awesome service!!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2010

Chinwag is definitely one the best Thai food experiences I have ever had (Anna's in Ottawa tops my rankings). The atmosphere is pleasant, the menu has plenty of selections to choose from, the service is fast and attentive and the price is reasonable for the amount of food you are getting. The food (especially the seafood) is awesome! Try to avoid filling yourself up on the extra rice, save the space for the main dish.

    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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