Eat this: Talad, a Northern Thai ‘perma pop-up’

Owner Natalie Tangsakul aims to bridge lesser known dishes from the North of Thailand with influences from Laos, Myanmar and China.

18 February 2020
asianfusionThairestaurantsrestaurant openingstreet foodfood trend
  • The Gist: ‘Perma pop-up’ in Chelsea offering Northern Thai dishes with inspiration from across East and Southeast Asia
  • The Chef: Natalie Tangsakul
  • Location: 533 Lots Road, London, SW10 0TZ
  • Food in 5 words: Northern Thai with modern twist
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How did we get here?

Making the transition from pop-up to restaurant isn’t exactly a new phenomenon. However, the journey for Talad – a new Northern Thai restaurant in Chelsea – is somewhat unique.

Chef/owner Natalie Tansakul has taken Talad all over the capital, beginning as a street food stall and later as a supper club, and is now heading to South West London with what has been dubbed a ‘perma pop-up’. This means Chiangrai Rai-born Tansakul has six months to prove the venture can be a success, and if she can do so, Taland will become a permanent site at the end of the residency.

Tanskul’s mission to bring to life the spirit of the local Talad (markets) she would visit with her nan growing up, offering customers a chance to experience lesser known dishes from the North and Isaan (Northeast) regions of Thailand.



“I started calling people in the industry that I know and respect for some advice and guidance,” she wrote in her blog.

“All have been so helpful and just super encouraging with a generous pinch of realism. I'm not one to stick my head in the sand and hope for the best. I would rather have an idea somewhat, prepare and then hope for the best.

What’s different about it?

Pad thai and coconut-based curries are off the menu. Instead, Talad’s menu will take inspiration from the Northern Thai dishes of Tanskul’s childhood, while also incorporating modern culinary ideas. The regional menu is also influenced by dishes elsewhere in Southeast Asia, including Laos and Myanmar, as well as East Asia/China.



Northern Thai cuisine is usually more seasonal and lighter than traditional Thai food, while sticky rice is also a staple. This is reflected in Talad’s menu which features seasonally changing regional dishes, as well as lots of choice for vegetarians/vegans too such as Tum Lao Shiitake Aunty Penn (a spicy papaya salad) and a salad of wild greens and Thai-style arancini.

One month after opening for weekdays only, Taland will also expand to weekends when it will begin offering Asian-inspired pastries and breakfast treats.

You’ve got to try…

Fresh clams with basil chilli jam.

Sparkie also likes…

Chicken and wild ginger masala Hung Le (a mild and aromatic curry).

Go if…

You love Southeast Asian cooking but are tired of traditional Thai dishes.

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