David Thompson

Chef David Thompson

David Thompson fell in love with Thailand – it’s food, people and culture – on a holiday to Bangkok in the mid-’80s. Never one to do things by halves he set out to learn all he could about it, including mastering the language. On an early trip to Bangkok, he apprenticed himself to an octogenarian cook who had learned her craft in the royal palace. He says: “Khun Sombat had exacting culinary standards, everything was made by hand, her cooking was instinctive and spontaneous, relying upon taste and smell, not slavish adherence to measurements – and she completely transformed my understanding of Thai cuisine.”

By the early ’90s, in a pub bistro on Darley St Newtown, David started cooking Thai food unlike anything Sydney had ever tasted. He continued Australia’s culinary education moving Darley Street Thai to Kings Cross and opening the more casual Sailors Thai in The Rocks.

Since 2001 he’s taken his cooking to the world with Nahm in London (the first Thai restaurant to ever receive a Michelin star) and Bangkok, also Michelin-starred and named Asia’s Best Restaurant in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. David’s dedication to Thai cuisine was acknowledged with a Lifetime Achievement Award at Asia’s 50 Best in 2016.

Today David oversees restaurants around the world, including Long Chim Sydney and Perth, Aaharn in Hong Kong, Aksorn in Bangkok and Long Dtai in Koh Samui.

Join David in the Kitchen
Experience & Explore

Try these extra recipes from my Month of Thai Inspired by David:

Long Chim features in my Top 5 Thai Restaurants List

Follow David on Instagram @chefdavidthompson @aksornbkk @longchim

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Chef Q&A

I was intrigued by it's nebulous, contrary nature, indeed by the unpredictability of Thai food and the Thai people in general.

Long Chim brings the best of modern Bangkok to Sydney (and Perth). It's authentic Thai food in a casual setting to enjoy with friends. Our maa long chim (come, try and taste) menu is the best way to experience a traditional Thai meal.

Aksorn is in an historic building and the menu is based on the food of 1950s Bangkok, some dishes rarely seen these days. I feel it's important to preserve them so that the young Thais don't lose touch with their heritage.

After many years research we've developed a retort method that means we can make traditional curry pastes from organic produce, mixed with fresh coconut cream and seasoned with good local palm sugar and fish sauce that we can ship to all our restaurants. It guarantees consistency and overcomes the problem of sourcing authentic Thai produce outside of Thailand.

What Our Cooks Say

Melisa (Beacon Hill, NSW)
Melisa (Beacon Hill, NSW)
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We made the pot-sticker dumplings and bang bang chicken – once again both exceeded our expectations. My husband keeps saying it’s better ordering this than going out to restaurants as the recipes and food quality are amazing.
Glennis (Caringbah South, NSW)
Glennis (Caringbah South, NSW)
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The whole Be Inspired experience has helped me love cooking again. I was sick of cooking the same old things - meal time is a lot brighter thanks to you Roberta.
Kate (Killara, NSW)
Kate (Killara, NSW)
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I loved the Fresh & Easy Chicken – simple instructions, only a few ingredients and the time factor absolutely spot on. Then came the highlight, the taste, no compromise on the enjoyment of that meal! For the time poor Fresh & Easy hits the mark indeed.
Jen (Tamarama, NSW)
Jen (Tamarama, NSW)
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Thank you for stocking our pantry with such authentic Ingredients and quality produce ... I’ve so enjoyed picking fresh leaves from the herb pots and loved listening to the chef's playlist while cooking. We really like the flexibility of cooking over a couple of days and changing the order we cook the dishes in when we want to.
Katrina (Arncliffe, NSW)
Katrina (Arncliffe, NSW)
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I am absolutely loving these boxes! There are Ingredients I have never worked with before so having the confidence to try something new is so much fun! The recipes are just amazing and the notes on what can be prep’d beforehand are a great help too. Thank you so much.
Nathan (Manly, NSW)
Nathan (Manly, NSW)
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Loving Be Inspired! Felt like a kid opening up a Christmas present when the box arrived. Fresh herb pots are a nice touch!
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