PEr FYI

May 15, 2020

So Asean Café & Restaurant, Bangkok…master of none

My reaction to the Jack of all trade menu is that there was no way this casual cafe could excel at preparing each different ethnic dish well. They were obviously casting a wide net, trying to appeal to the largest number of diners.

The familiar dishes – Puffy shrimp omelette, Grilled pork neck with spicy jaew dip, stir-fried squid with salted egg yolk sauce are all there but you also get slow-cooked chicken and pork adobo from the Philippines, Indonesian-style chicken satay or Singapore chicken rice.

This is just another one of those typical, charmless cafes in Bangkok. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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April 25, 2020

Siamese Boat Noodle, Bangkok…just go

There’s no beating around the bush. This Siam Paragon noodle joint serves, you guessed it, boat noodles.

The highlight was the Australian wagyu ribeye, beef ball, braised shank and tendon where the soup comes with a gorgeous beef flavour with a hint of spiciness and the beef itself is seriously tender and tasty to boot. While the much loved Australian wagyu ribeye is perfectly cooked and a firm bestseller here, another favourite is the suitably spice steamed wontons with Sichuan chilli. And I never tire of the grilled pork ball (3 skewers) with pleasingly flavoured sweet chilli dip. The crispy pork fat is also a crowd pleaser.

The place is regularly packed and it deserves to be busy. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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April 10, 2020

Ruen Urai, Bangkok…nearly 650 tripadvisor reviews don’t lie

First things first: the food. It’s good!

When evaluating local Thai spots in Bangkok, I like to run restaurants through my Thai Restaurant Test, which features just one question – “Would you eat anything other than pad thai here?” Ruen Urai gets an A on that test. There’s a whole menu of dishes worth ordering which helps separate it from your run of the mill joints. The other thing that separates it from the slew of Thai restaurants in the area? The space actually feel comfortable and almost borderline romantic

Thai isn’t a place worth traveling out of the way for. But it’s definitely worth having in your back pocket when you’re in the area and you need to fill your veins with some Thai food.This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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September 21, 2019

After You Dessert Café, Bangkok…arrive hungry…

Should we really leave room for desserts? Bangkok dessert scene is anything but boring. Moreover, I crave my sweets. More and more I revere my sweets.

It’s hard to avoid the After You revolution, with Instagram going wild. If you’re feeling extra naughty, order one of their indulgent baby shibuya honey toast to go with it. While I wouldn’t advise regular consumption, an occasional choc banana pancake can’t do too much harm, right?! The baby mango sticky rice kakigori is selling like hot cakes but I don’t share the same sentiments.

Other than mango sticky rice places, After You is easily one of the best dessert places in Bangkok. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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August 31, 2019

Lek Seafood, Bangkok…don’t make the mistake of dying before you eat here

When dining out in Bangkok, the spectre of crippling indecision lurks around every corner. Once you get past the overwhelming question of where to eat, you’re still faced with the menu: what to order? Lek Seafood provides an easy answer to both of these questions.

First of all, you should eat there. Second, show up in a group of 3 or 4 and go for these: the grilled cockles is a simple satisfying dish. Also fantastic is the shrimp in hot and sour soup (tom yum kung) which is perfectly cooked and a firm bestseller here. My favourite was the stir fried soft crab in curry sauce. I will never tire of it. The stir fried cabbage with fish sauce is also much loved and the stir fried baby clam with sweet basil was a refreshing touch between the spicier dishes. By the time you get to dessert, the choice is especially easy: the mango sticky rice may not sound like anything special but this is one of the best in the city.

Fantastic, authentic food and great service, Lek Seafood deserves all its repeat visits from all Thai food lovers. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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August 9, 2019

Corgi in the Garden, Bangkok…a whole new level of cuteness

Lovers of corgis, beware: you might not want to leave this place. Behold its stubby little legs and equally stubby tail. You can now cuddle with these adorable cuties in a cheerful and homely ambience.

Everything the humans need to know:

You can feed, touch the little cuties while sitting on the floor sipping coffee or tea. A selection of 12 corgis are on hand to be cuddled and offer highly Instagrammable photo opportunities. You need to love that they will climb on your lap and lick your iPhone. The entry fee covers entrance, a drink and a time slot of 120 minutes with your favourite furry friend. Get there early to avoid long queues.

It’s bound to lift your mood, as dogs do. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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July 14, 2019

Crab and claw, Bangkok…I tried the C&C lobster roll because you shouldn’t

Let me set the record straight: despite what the reviewers said, this roll is not worth your 950 baht.

The price of the lobster roll seemed a little pricey, even for Bangkok standards, and was pretty standard roll. The C&C Lobster roll’s limp bun was liberally mashed in with globs of chilled maine lobster pulled through drawn butter topped with lemon zest – but none of the succulence of the best of its kind. Overall unimpressive.

Love the lobster roll in burger and lobster, not impressed with this one here. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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June 15, 2019

Paste, Bangkok…tastebud-smashing Thai food

Talk about fusion: Michelin-starred Paste must be the only restaurant in Bangkok that mixes traditional tongue-blasting Thai recipes written centuries ago with an innovative and creative twist. It matters not. Paste has wowed me with ingenuity and authenticity.

The triumphant water melon, ground salmon with fresh shallots and roasted galangal powder (served at the inauguration of the temple of the Emerald Buddha in the year 1809 King Rama I) was light, delicate, intriguingly moreish and a mishmash of surprising flavours . What’s not to love about that? It was one of those dishes you eat in smaller and smaller mouthfuls to ward off that moment when there’s none left. The smoky southern yellow curry with premium Australian spanner crab, hummingbird flowers, Thai samphire and turmeric had levels of deep flavors that just kept revealing themselves spoonful by spoonful. Get the chiang rai jasmine rice perfumed with organic jasmine flower to go with the curry.

Paste’s dishes are a jumble of flavours, but nothing about this place is a mess. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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January 5, 2019

Nuer Koo, Bangkok…has beef noodles like no one else in Bangkok

There are other beef noodle shops in Bangkok, but there is nothing quite like Nuer Koo (pronounce ‘Nua Kooh’).

I opted for medium sliced kobe beef quickly dipped in broth. The soul-stirring soup is deceptively mild at first, gaining carnality with each spoonful but never growing too forceful. It manages to be light and clean on the palate, with a straightforward beefiness that doesn’t linger too long. It comes with rough cuts of gorgeously marbled beef, putting up gentle resistance. The noodles have an integrity and chew you might associate with good Italian pasta.

I’m calling the beef noodle soup here a BUY. This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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December 30, 2018

Somtum Der, Bangkok…the food was terrible, offensively terrible

The whole meal was a complete fiasco. We left in a fury of indignation, and all I could think of, as I walked down Soi 55 toward Sukhumvit, was what fantastic material I’d been provided with to write.

With all that positive reviews on Somtum Der in Silom, I was looking forward to this meal at their Sukhumvit addition with great anticipation.

The food turned out to be rather unappetizing. The sa poak gai tod der Der styled deep fried chicken thigh was revolting. The moo ping kati sod – grilled coconut milk marinated pork skewers was nothing to write home about. The Nua rong hai der – house special grilled marinated beef is bad, really bad and lacking any flavor, just dry and boring. The most meaningless plate I’ve ever seen for dinner. We are almost as mad at this place as our stomachs are at us.

It’s a shame and a pity to leave food on the plate uneaten and have no one ask the reason why! This is the true truth as I say it as it is…

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