There are numbers of Thai restaurant in Bangkok that I would highly recommend, both Thai restaurant in luxurious Thai traditional house in a Fine Dining type and Thai restaurant in a relaxing ambience. All of these restaurants offer the real Thai taste, enjoyed by Thai people who have Thai dishes in daily life, not the tasted which have been altered to please the foreigners’ tongue.
The first has just been newly opened recently during last Songkran festival, Siam Wisdom. It presents Thai dishes wisdom, in a real original Thai taste. The service and ambience of Fine Dining are exactly the same as the star quality restaurants in Europe. People would say “wow” with many elaborate garnished dishes that are so tempting to taste when they visit Siam Wisdom.
Siam Wisdom is located in Soi Sawasdee or Soi Sukhumvit 31, section 4, same as Oasis Spa. The founders are Chef Choompol Chaengprai, the famous Thai cuisine chef from Iron Chef Thailand, who grew up and accumulated experience at a famous Thai restaurant called Sanguansri, Shakrit Yamnam, a famous actor and a TV host of Iron Chef Thailand who loves the art of gastronomy and many other friends.
The concept of Siam Wisdom I admire is Chef Choompol’s will to select only high quality regional ingredients in Thailand to prepare world class dishes. Outlandish ingredients like truffle mushroom or Alaskan crab would never appear in the menu. The recommended ones must be red ant eggs, citron, local vegetables, regional snake-headed fish found in the rice field, river prawn. These ingredients are considered extremely fine for Thai dishes. If there are some ingredients that were not available in Thailand before. Only the ingredients which can be produced in Thailand nowadays will be selected, such as caviar from sturgeon, chocolate and beef.
The menu will be adjusted by season. The best ingredients available in each season will be on the list, just like high class restaurants in France and Japan. The new seasonal menu is officially fixed by the date of The Emerald Buddha garment changing
The menu is separated into three sets of menu, from Ancient, hundred year-old recipes that are very rare to find, Classical, which are loved by the Thais and people around the world to Innovative set menu with elaborate creation and gimmick.
In summer, I would suggest to come around at lunchtime and order the menu which I consider a favourite signature dish here, “Ka nom Jeen Nam Prik, rice noodles with bean curry. It is full of taste with a pleasant smell. The curry is super creamy, mixed with golden peanuts white leg shrimp, bergamot juice, citron juice, bergamot oil mixed with dry chilly, fresh and creamy coconut milk and genuine coconut sugar. Vermicelli really impress me since it’s an original fomented rice noodles, recipe from Nakornrajasima, the northeastern province of Thailand, eaten with or crispy fried vegetable and fried dry chili.
Rice noodles eaten with powdered shrimp sand pineapple slices is another dish for summertime as well, it’s seasoned with grilled curry fish ball from clown knife fish mixed with king mackerel. Before trying, add lemon juice, sugar and chilly in fish sauce. Even fish sauce is directly delivered from the factory.
Of course, another must-have dish in summer is rice in ice water. Water totally gave a wonderful smell by jasmine and bread flower, which are organic and domestic-planted. Side dishes that cannot be missed out is a crispy sweet radish fried in sugar, green pepper stuffed with shrimp and premium kurobuta pork, homemade sweet sliced pork from premium tender loin pork, fried small shrimp paste balls from Klong Kone small shrimp paste is stirred with grilled cat fish, finger root, galangal, lemon grass and bergamot for six hours and onion stuffed with big snake headed fish to become more crispy.
Ancient set menu is served by courses, I suggest powdered fish sausage, powdered fish is seasoned with various herbs that gives wonderful aromatic scent and soft taste, citron and pickled garlic these ingredients are wrapped in Indian coral tree leaves and wildbetal leafbush leaves, eaten with a Thai style sausage grilled in a brazier smoked with crispy and dry coconut. Thai spicy sauce, an ancient recipe of dipping, the sauce is fine and creamy with small shrimp paste in an original type from the northeast which contains the mixture of dory fish fomented in salt and pineapple, eaten with a big river prawn or giant freshwater prawn in a medium cook.
Many optional dishes in ancient set are also available, for example, Thai crispy pancakes with river prawn stuff. Cassod leaf curry with grilled beef (or grilled kurobuta pork), salted beef in coconut milk curry with a sweet taste from entrails, bael leaf and celery juice and a very stylish dessert like honey popped rice and crispy rice ice cream.
Or you might select the classic set ( 1 person can try 8 dishes, 1 dessert and four little pieces of sweet called Petit Four) The must have are crab meat and wildbetal leafbush leaf with curry paste (of course it must be a homemade recipe by Siam Wisdom) mixed with sheatfish and add freshly streamed horse crab meat and also domestic fowl satay, curried fish cake, buffalo meat massa man curry (must try!), spicy prawn soup with young coconut.
The most spectacular and exotic one must be the Innovative set, consists of 6 courses. The most creative menu of this set is spicy vegetable and prawn soup in a universal look, with a whole piece of snake-headed fish on a coulis pumpkin that is boiled and smashed with butter and spicy vegetable and prawn soup so it becomes a chewing soup. Another are savoury crab meat stuffed with red ant eggs, a summer selection, a Thai style soufflé from musk melon in coconut milk eaten with fresh musk melon topped with sweet musk melon sauce and popped rice, Somtam or cucurbit salad with caviar from great quality sturgeon from Doi Inthanon Royal Project and a fried duck drumstick confit with fried red chili curry sauce.
Khun Shakrit is responsible of Thai style appetizer and snacks at “Taitoon Bar” on the ground floor, such as, the Spanish has tapas, a snack menu so Khun Shakrit also has ‘Thaipas’ like frog drumstick with banana blossom and garlic, Tubtim Siam spicy pomelo salad with lemongrass and spicy beef salad with cheese and taco in Mexican style.
It is recommended to call for a reservation at 0-2260-7811-2. Citibank Credit Card member, Siam Wisdom restaurant 15% discount on dinner set menu (May 1 – Oct 31’14).
Chon at The Siam Hotel
The next place is also a premium one. This restaurant is called “Chon” which means a spoon at The Siam Hotel. The decoration is neat and fine in antique style but not too old-fashioned, decorated with pieces of antique collection in a teak wood Thai traditional house that is over a century old and was once visited by many world renown visitors such as a former first lady, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. And a famous Hollywood star who was one of James Bond 007, Roger Moore.
This Thai house is located by The Chao Phraya River, in a classic ambience which has become a place for young people to hang out. It is impressive that they take their parents and family to enjoy the atmosphere and wonderful taste of original full-flavoured Thai dishes, which is not too spicy, appropriate for the Thais and foreign guests again.
The direction to The Siam Hotel, from Rajavithee Road, just skip crossing the Krungthon (or Sanghi) bridge and make a u-turn under the bridge then turn left to Khao Road all along the one way road. The Siam Hotel is on the left side before reaching Sukhothai Palace.
The signature Thai dish that you should not miss is grilled beef with northeastern style dipping sauce from a mild Australian rib eye called Black Angus , grilled in a charcoal brazier until it’s scented and seasoned with a real Thai taste of northeastern style dipping sauce. And also a short name menu, spare ribs which is tender and full-flavoured. It is cooked in many steps, simmer the ribs in pork stock. And the important ingredient for the scent ad taste is honey from longan flower. When the guests order this dish, it will be grilled again and topped with rich sauce.
The next dish is crab meat and wildbetal leafbush leaf curry scented with a rich taste of wildbetal leafbush leaves but not too hot and spicy, added with a spoonful pieces of crab that you can enjoy with no need to go down to the south. Spicy fried butterfish offers a luscious piece of butterfish with finely seasoned taste. Decrease a spicy taste with fried Thai morning glory with chilly. Differently from other restaurants that normally use Chinese morning glory. A thick stem of Thai morning glory will not subside when frying it. So it is still delicious and crispy.
There are also many appetizer available, for example, spicy pomelo salad in a clear sauce without coconut milk mixed with roasted coconut, boiled water chestnut, cashew nut and fried onion and garlic, spicy glass noodles salad with big sea shrimps, spicy duck salad with a crispy fried duck skin and fried galangal, lemongrass and bergamot leaves. And also one dish menu like beef and chicken spicy curry noodles, Pad Thai noodles with shrimps, even basic dishes like papaya salad and grilled chicken. End with a stylish Thai dessert, coconut milk ice cream with Thai custard cake and mango sago.
Chon Restaurant is a brilliant place for those who love giving an amazing experience to their love ones. It is opened daily from 11 AM to 11 PM. On Friday to Sunday, reservation in advance is required by calling 0-2206-6999. Otherwise, there’s a chance that you might not experience a genuine Thai taste according to a full reservation.
Chon, The Siam : Exclusive promotion for Citibank Credit Card member, get 10% discount on food only for Citibank Ultima, Preferred, Select and Rewards card member (April 1 – July 31’14).
Miss Siam at Huchang Heritage Hotel Bangkok
The next restaurant is simply decorated in a contemporary Thai design, located by the pool and beautiful garden at Huachang Heritage Hotel, Phayathai Road by Huachang Bridge in Pathumwan District, Miss Siam Restaurant. The name is derived from the species of Thai waterlily that is beautiful and internationally popular from The International Waterlilly Contest in 2007, held by International Waterlily and Water Gardening Society (IWGS )
Here at Miss Siam, they mainly focus on original full-flavoured taste of genuine Thai recipe like local Thai dishes in regional area. The foreigners will exactly experience the real original hot and spicy taste of Thai cuisine.
The proof of real Thai recipe is shrimp paste chili sauce and fried mackerel, in ancient recipe by mixing the chili pasted seasoned with sea salt instead of fish sauce. The shrimp pasted from Chumpon is selected to burn in order to cut out the bad taste before making the chili paste, then mix the juice from stale orange (sounds unsavoury, but it’s a juice from oranges that have been kept for a longer period) , bring more sauer taste with sliced solanum and season with lemon juice. Mackerel from Mae Klong is a perfect combination. And the additional exotic dish included is hot basil fried in coconut milk , just chew a bird-chili after this and you will get sweat from a spicy delight!
Another delicious menu of real Thai taste is crab meat in coconut milk sauce and crispy fish, with aromatic mild coconut milk from a real squeezed coconut and add more aroma with smashed lemongrass.
If you like an elaborate and selective dishes, try ordering a set menu “The Chaba”(650++) with its slogan, fine taste of full-flavoured dishes in a full option. Let’s start with appetizer like crispy Thai noodles that is really crispy in the way I like, not just a sticky noodles, it is mixed with citron sauce and other aromatic ingredient and traditional Thai mouth-watering dishes, chicken stuffing in egg tart which is made as a neatly filled omelet in a form of checker board, and vegetarian golden bag with lotus seed filling.
Continue with main course dishes from the “Chaba” Thai set, spicy prawns soup with a strong taste of soup from prawn shells. Thai papaya salad with peanut in sugar coat, eaten with grilled chicken seasoned with yellow turmeric with a side dish, rice noodle with garlic oil and beef massa man curry, thumbs up for its delicious taste. The secret is to simmer curry in a low heat from white charcoal and add more taste with ginger. Lower the degree of spiciness with stir-fried mushroom with oyster sauce, stir-fried glass noodle with crab meat and deep fried fish cake. End the set menu of “Chaba” with special Thai dessert of golden banana in coconut milk.
There are many also many dishes of ancient recipe available to try, such as a set of snack called Miss Siam consists of shrimp and crab spring roll, beef pork and chicken satay. And also stuffed taro root, which flour must be kneaded when taro root is hot, then add coconut milk, lime water and salt, a stuffing is stir-fried paste from river prawn in a brass pan, beef curry with bird-chili from homemade curry paste, a hot basil is added to make it taste stronger, spicy grilled beef salad with grapes from tender Australian beef and fried snapper topped with sweet, sour and hot sauce from freshly squeezed pineapple juice. Traditional Thai dessert are deletable imitation fruits, steamed whole pumpkin with coconut custard eaten with fresh coconut ice cream including various toppings to add.
You are invited to try the genuinely hot and spicy taste of Thai dishes at Miss Siam. Open daily from 10.30 AM – 11 .30 PM. To make a reservation please call 02-217 0777. Exclusive promotion for Citibank Credit Card member, get 15% discount on A La Carte menu food only (Now – Nov 30’14).
When we talk about a real Thai cuisine restaurant opened at a real royal residence offers various contemporary menu of snacks, main dishes including famous cake and dessert in a cozy relaxing ambience for everyone with affordable price. Yes, I am talking about Kalpapruek which I raise my both hands for.
Kalpapruek was firstly established in 1976 in a royal residence called Wang Pramuan owned by His Serence Highness Prince Bhisadej Rajani on Pramuan Road, Silom near Bangkok Christian College School. Her Ladyship Datchareerat Ratchani (or Khun Ying Lek) was the first person who trained the chef intensively and the owner of secret recipe from traditional court attendant at the beginning.
The place is spacious with a large parking area. The seats are available both indoor and outside at the garden. Don’t be shy to come and take a seat alone since there are many delicious one dish menus available to choose.
One special thing is that there is a daily special menu each day in a week. My favourite is a Tuesday menu, papaya salad with steamed rice and chicken curry eaten with sweet sliced pork. Special menu on Wednesday is rice noodles with bean curry , Rice noodles in fish curry sauce with vegetables on Friday and crispy pancake stuffed with seasoned dry shrimp on Sunday. Moreover, a Monday special is Indian curry noodles, on Thursday is rice with shrimp paste sauce and on Saturday is beef and chicken mataba. It is noticeable that all daily special menus are exotic ones.
Appetizer dishes here are outstanding, for example, steamed Chinese pudding Or jui guoi made of jasmine rice flour (self-mashed and milled) topped with stir-fried sweet radish, minced pork and crab meat, with salty , sauer and sweet taste of black sauce and fried radish cake which is also made of jasmine rice flour but no radish mixed in this recipe, fried with egg and bean sprouts. It’s a simple but delicious menu.
The other must-have one-dish and course menus are Roti served with green beef and bird-chili curry which has been a famous dish for a long time, with crispy fried roti and aromatic bird-chili curry, pork can be substituted for non-beef eaters. Red curry roast duck or domestic fowl or even roti made of condensed milk are also optional. For red curry chicken, there is also very delicious red curry chicken served with rice noodles and the next is my favorite dish I have to order every time, beef tongue stew served with rice, the large piece of tongue is served in a very creamy tomato stew sauce and another popular dish, delicious Pad Thai sticky noodles with shrimp.
Or you might order elaborate exotic chili paste menus. Let’s start with salted black olive chili sauce, with aromatic salted black olive seasoned with salty and sweet tasted, served with crackling, sweeten pork and boiled vegetables, aromatic bergamot chili paste which is seasoned with bergamot juice instead of lime, add raw mango with boiled shrimp topping for all the sour, salty and sweet taste served with fried mackerel and crispy cat fish. Including a set of spicy beef and tomato dip and Chiangmai typical young chili paste served with northern Thai sausage, fried pork, crispy pork crackling and hot sticky rice.
We cannot end the story of Kalpapruek without talking about chocolate fudge cake since an original recipe of chocolate fudge cake was born here (70 Baht per piece and 800 Baht per one pound). The light texture of cake topped with soft and sweet chocolate fudge makes it so irresistible. More bestselling cakes and desserts are carrot cake, genua coffee cake, orange cake, blueberry pie, coffee raisin and éclair in vanilla, coffee and chocolate flavors.
I must say that these are only some of all the food and dessert menus at Kalpapruek. You should prove it by yourself. Kalpapruek on Pramuan Road is opened daily from 8 AM to 6 PM. All the menus are available at 11 AM. It is closed at 3 PM on Sunday. The telephone number is 0-2236-4338.
The other branches of Kalpapreuk are at 7 Floor, Central World Plaza (Tel. 0-2-613-1359), The 1st floor of Mercury Ville building at Chidlom (Tel. 0-2658-5565) and By Kalpapreuk at Cristal Design Center (CDC) Phase 2(Tel.0-2102-2459). Visit Kalpapruek near your place, but if you would like to enjoy an original ambience, head to the first branch on Pramuan Road.
Location 66 Soi Sawasdee, Sukhumvit 31 Section 4, Klongto Nua, Wattana, Bangkok 10110
Open hours 12.00 - 14.30 and 18.00 - 22.30 (Friday to Saturday 23.00) daily
Note The menu is changed season by season, hot season, rainy season and cold season
Chon at The Siam Hotel
Location The Siam Hotel, Khao Road, Vajira hospital, Dusit, Bangkok 10300
Open hours 11.00 -23.00 daily (Last Order at 22.30 )
Miss Siam at Huchang Heritage Hotel Bangkok
Location 400 Huachang Bridge , Phayathai Road, pathumwan, Bangkok 10330
Open hours 10.30 - 22.30 daily
Location 27 Pramuan Road, Silom , Bangrak , Bangkok 10500
Telephone 02-236 4335, 02-236-4338
Open hours 08.00 - 18.00 daily (close at 15.00 on Sunday)