Pranee Laurillard goes it alone with Lime Squeezy Thai Kitchen

By Joe Lutrario

- Last updated on GMT

Pranee Laurillard to open Lime Squeezy Thai Kitchen restaurants in Chichester and Brighton

Related tags Pranee Laurillard Lime Squeezy Thai Kitchen Giggling squid Thai cuisine Brighton Chichester Casual dining

Pranee Laurillard has stepped back from national Thai restaurant chain Giggling Squid to launch faster paced concept Lime Squeezy Thai Kitchen.

Laurillard - who founded the now 38-strong Giggling Squid in Brighton back in 2002 with husband Andrew​ - has taken large, prominent sites in Chichester and Brighton vacated by more established chains.

Lime Squeezy Thai Kitchen is independent from Giggling Squid and Andrew has no involvement. 

Laurillard is currently fitting out the former Wahaca in Chichester with an intention to open as early as April with the Brighton site - the former PizzaExpress in Jubilee Square - expected to open in the second half of the year.

The concept is billed as being quicker and more relaxed than Giggling Squid with a focus on one-dish meals and a lower spend per head of £19. 

“The whole place will be geared towards a quick turnaround. The demographic is intended to be younger than Giggling Squid but there will be some crossover in terms of the customer base,” she says. 

“It will have long communal tables and the feel will be light with clean lines. Both the sites are very large, especially when compared to the first Giggling Squid site (originally called Mai Ped Ped Ped), which was absolutely tiny.” 

The menu will be largely based on the top selling dishes at Giggling Squid. “We’re giving people what they want. We’re not trying to do anything adventurous - the key dishes will be green curry, red curry, panang curry and stir-frys. People in the UK are comfortable with Thai food now. They know what they want.”

But unlike Giggling Squid, Lime Squeezy Thai Kitchen will offer brunch, opening at 10am to serve egg-based dishes with Thai flavours and some sweeter dishes including grilled banana and pancakes with blueberries and honey. 

The new concept is being personally financed by Laurillard, who wants it to grow without reliance on private equity or other forms of corporate finance. 

Laurillard says she has taken the unusual decision to open a further site before testing a new concept because she could not turn down the Brighton site.

“I love Brighton. I used to live nearby and find it quite unlike anywhere else in the UK. It's so vibrant. But it’s always been very hard to get a decent site. Things have changed now. There's a lot of availability but the PizzaExpress site really stood out.

"Both Brighton and Chichester are a good fit for Squid Lime Squeezy Thai Kitchen because there’s such a good mix of people, including lots of young families and students which is exactly the demographic we're after."

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