It has been a whirlwind two and a half years for owners Rebecca and Kevin Tan of Papa Rich Street Food Kitchen.
Having opened in December 2015, the restaurant has built a reputation of serving up some of the best Asian street food dishes to be found in the west of Ireland. Operating from three premises, in Woodquay, Born in Newtownsmith, and Papa Rich Express on the Headford Road, the restaurant has become a firm favourite with Galwegians, especially those with a palate for authentic Asian cuisine.
"We wanted to serve quality Asian street food for street food prices," says owner Rebecca Tan. "My husband, Kevin, had been working as a chef for many years before we decided to take the plunge with Papa Rich. We noticed that Galway was lacking in an Asian street food restaurant, so we went for it, and thankfully, it has been a great success."
Combining vegetables and meats that are sourced locally, with herbs and spices imported from all over Asia, Kevin Tan and the kitchen crew serve up meals that would struggle to be bettered in Thailand and Malaysia, such is the quality and authenticity of the dishes.
"One of our real strengths is our original recipes," explains Rebecca Tan. "Grandma's ancient curry paste was created by Kevin's mum and is one of our most popular dishes. The sauce for the barbecue ribs was developed by Kevin himself, it is also a customer favourite. It is important that we use fresh quality ingredients, but Kevin's ability to create home grown ideas to complement those ingredients is what sets us apart from other restaurants."
Appreciated and adorned throughout Galway city and county, Papa Rich's delicious concoctions have not gone unnoticed at a national level, with the restaurant recently winning the Best World Cuisine (Connacht Winner ) at the Irish Restaurant Awards 2018. Rebecca Tan says the award means a lot to the team at Papa Rich.
"We are absolutely delighted with the award. It came as a bit of surprise but it is very pleasing for everyone involved at Papa Rich because without our hard working team there would be no Papa Rich. They have been with us from day one of our journey starting out in Woodquay, so the award is great as it recognises their efforts as well."
The next stage of the journey will begin in a fortnight's time when Papa Rich opens its doors of a new restaurant in Salthill, just above Galway Atlantaquaria. "We are very excited about the opening of the new restaurant," says Rebecca. "It is the next step for Papa Rich and we are looking forward to seeing our customers, old and new, over the rest of 2018."
For more information find Papa Rich on social media, or to make a reservation at Papa Rich in BORN call 091 539648/539644 any time after 12.30pm