On new year’s eve 2013, an Uber driver in San Francisco hit and killed a 6-year-old girl who was walking with her mother and young brother.
As we reported at the time, Uber denied responsibility for the accident, arguing that while driver Syed Muzzafar was logged on to the Uber system, he didn’t actually have an Uber passenger in his car at the time he killed the child.
Later the family of the victim filed a lawsuit against Uber and the driver for wrongful death, negligence and negligent infliction of emotional distress. Again, Uber denied responsibility for accidents caused by its drivers.
Almost two years later, new legal filings (embedded below) show that Uber has had a change of mind, if not of heart…
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In three words (well, four): Authentic, Vibrant, Mouth-Watering
The Lowdown: Half the pleasure of visiting another country is trying the cuisine. I don’t understand people who go away and insist on finding places that sell fish and chips, or some sort of stodgy pie. For me, experiencing different cultures is all about the flavours. One of the best places in the world for this has to be Thailand – the heat of chilli; the freshness of coriander; the amazing fragrant hit of lemongrass.
These are the very flavours that make up Suda Thai – a chilled out restaurant that was opened in 2011, and has ever since been offering its authentic and exotic dishes to the public. Thai mealtimes have a lot of focus on sharing – go anywhere in this South East Asian country and you’ll see tables groaning under the weight of dishes, being tucked into by large groups. It’s this idea of communal feasting that Suda Thai are embracing with their Share Suda Menu – a chance to order small bowls and nibbles that celebrate the very best in Thai Street Food.
Location: St Martin’s Court in Covent Garden is a cosmopolitan cluster of eateries tucked just next door to the bustling thoroughfare of Seven Dials. As a result you don’t feel too overrun by footfall, and there’s quite a holiday vibe about the place.
The Occasion: This is the ideal chance for a catch up with friends – it’s casual but has bags of character and the feeling of a special occasion. Thai food is perfect for sharing anyway, because of the combination of sensational flavours, and here you won’t have to worry about food envy. You’ll love just dipping into dishes and setting the world to rights.
Decor: There are two levels to Suda Thai – the ground floor opens from the square and has a sheer glass frontage that providesa bright, modern feel. Upstairs is more chic, with ebony walls, luxe leather couches, and pale wooden furniture. There are still the benefits of huge windows though, and a circular bar is a shining island in the midst of contemporary décor.
Atmosphere: Suda Thai has a real authentic charm about it – the waiting staff all exude that classic Thai hospitality, and there’s a calmness about the place that makes the idea of a long, languorous dinner with friends very tempting. The tables are nicely spaced apart too, so there is a feeling of intimacy for your little group.
Menu Concept: The menu contains all the classic favourites of Thailand, from coconut-based curries, ginger and chillistir-fries and Tom Yum soup. The new ShareSudais embracing an even wider range of Street Food flavours, from the contemporary to the traditional.Small bowls, small bites, and then the larger dishes are all featured.
What We Ate: There were four of us eating, and we’d barely got past the first page before the sharing platters arrested our eyes. Thai cuisine contains some of the best nibblesin the world (in my humble opinion), and so we knew this was a must-try. Soon we were chowing down on succulent fish and prawn lollipops, biting into the most delicious skewers of peanut-rich chicken satay, and dipping Thai juicy dumplings into salty soy sauce. There was not a hint of grease to be tasted, and freshness just sprung from each mouthful. Although each flavour packed a punch, none of them overwhelmed the others. The platter was soon cleared, with all of us announcing it delicious.
We couldn’t very well leave without trying the new skewers, and so we had Goong Yang – huge flame-grilled butterfly king prawns. Lying open like newly cracked books, the flesh as white as springtime clouds, they were absolutely perfect. Sweet on the inside, followed by that delectable smoky taste, and accompanied by a tangy seafood sauce. We could have almost been sitting under a beach-hut in KohSamui.
For main courses, the Suda Pad Thai had to tried – and was thankfully served in that essential way of peanuts and lime on the side. The contrasting flavours were superb –just enough fish sauce to not overpower, but add a delightful tang against long ribbons of noodles and succulent prawns. We also had Chicken Pad Kraprao, served in a rich and shimmering sauce of chilli and basil, and a superb mild but rich Massaman curry. With every bite I was transported back to the steamy, humid and seductive streets of Bangkok, and those smells of frying from stalls. Suda are nailing authenticity, that’s for sure.
It’s also worth mentioning the wine variety is very impressive (which, unfortunately, the country of Thailand is yet to catch up on!) The house prosecco is a steal at £22, and adds that little bit of delightful occasion to a meal with mates, while the Chablis is a fabulous accompaniment to the saltiness of the food.
Overall:There’s something about sharing food with friends that has an aura of escapism about it – retreating from the real world and indulging in precious times with the ones you love. Much like a holiday really – and with Share Suda one kind of feels they’re enjoying both. The relaxed environment and charming staff will transport you from the hustle bustle of everyday life, and the food sings with sublime flavours. The new menu is ideal for catching up with pals, and there was much laughter and gossip as we passed dishes between ourselves. If you can’t afford a holiday away, then get yourself to Suda with a group of friends to share dinner – you’ll feel almost as refreshed afterwards.