Thursday, December 24, 2015

Riversdale Thai, Camberwell by Benny

It’s dinner for three tonight. An impromptu encounter with Bilby’s brother and a shared hankering for Thai has us searching for nearby Thai restaurants. We have often driven past Riversdale Thai but never stopped to eat, so in the best traditions of Eat and Be Merry, this is an opportunity to be grasped.

Riversdale Thai, Camberwell, Thai, Thai larb gai, minced chicken salad
Thai larb gai - minced chicken salad

Riversdale Thai is on Riversdale Road, sandwiched between Riversdale train station and Riversdale Park, and just to avoid confusion, several kilometres away from Riversdale Golf Course. Many years ago the building housed a traditional milk bar with residence attached, and that heritage is still obvious. From the outside you expect a tiny dining area, which is initially confirmed as you enter to a small waiting area (for take-away) and five or six tables crammed just a bit too close together. As these are full at the moment, we are led up a small flight of stairs into the former residence, filled with additional tables fitted into the original floor plan, and through a glass door we can see what looks to be an outdoor bar/dining area which is not open tonight.

Riversdale Thai, Camberwell, Thai, red duck curry
Gaeng Dang Ped - red curry with coconut cream and duck

The menu is pretty standard for a Thai restaurant and has all of the classics, from which we choose Larb Gai (minced chicken salad), Pad Gapow Lamb (stir fry with vegetables), and Gaeng Dang Ped (red curry with coconut cream and duck), accompanied by steamed rice.

Riversdale Thai, Camberwell, Thai, stir fry, vegetables
Pad Gapow Lamb - stir fry with vegetables

The standout is easily the Larb Gai. Bilby and I love Thai salads, and this one does not disappoint, with flavourful chicken and fresh crisp salad heightened by a traditional Thai dressing; the duck is tasty and tender, the sauce creamy with fruity overtones; the lamb is also fine. However, across all dishes there is something missing – the chilli heat has been dialled down a bit too low for my liking, and I am far from being a chilli fiend. Some restaurants offer differing levels of chilli heat on appropriate dishes. Riversdale Thai does not, but if it did I would be choosing a higher level.

Riversdale Thai, Camberwell, Thai
Looking around, there are more diners than you might expect on a mid-week evening. Riversdale Thai is popular; it knows its customers and is clearly providing what they want.


We liked it, but next time I will be asking for the chilli heat level to be raised just a bit.


If you like Thai flavours and prefer them at the milder end of the chilli scale, then Riversdale Thai is the place for you.  Also have a gander at Bureaucrat's review of Riversdale Thai's takeaway menu.

Find it at

Riversdale Thai
655 Riversdale Rd
Phone: (03) 9077 7782

Riversdale Thai Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 

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