A new restaurant offering exciting flavors and cool cocktails
The Nana area, mainly known for tourist-focused eateries and a red-light district, may not be popular for serious eats but a new restaurant called Invite is set to put the neighborhood on the gastrophile’s map and perhaps inject a bit of gentrification as well.
Large, folding doors lead to a dining and drinking space with an outstandingly welcoming vibe. The masculine, amber-hued setting offers comfy faux leather chairs that slightly adds to the eatery’s rather simple interiors. The first floor functions as a bar, while the more spacious second floor has a loftier and more private space, making it perfect for lunch or dinner.
Invite’s basic, understated setting has its advantages— guests focus all attention on their plates instead. Turkish-born chef Semet Mehmet, who has had stints at Michelin-starred establishments like Annisa in Manhattan and Bagatelle in Oslo, has created a menu that infuses pan-continental flavors with an emphasis on Nordic elements. There’s a well-presented octopus dish that benefits from the mildly sharp notes of dill—a common ingredient in seafood dishes in Scandinavia—and dill cream, balanced by brown butter, trout roe and cauliflower couscous (B320). The heftily portioned pork belly has a nice tender meat and crispy skin, and is beautifully glazed with orange sauce and spices, all producing an explosion of sweet, acidic and spicy flavors (B340).
Dessert is where chef Mehmet’s creativity truly shines. Wild mushroom, which is unfamiliar to sweet dishes, is braised in syrup for a candy-like texture and is combined with milk curd, lemon-peel cream and crispy quinoa to come up with a weird combination that works beautifully (B190). Vegetables are transformed into indulgences like dill granita and jelly and carrot chips that are nicely paired with white chocolate mousse (B190).
The bar downstairs differentiates itself from others in the area with a wide selection of premium spirits. These have become the base for heady yet balanced concoctions like Saint Barth, which mixes chili-infused vodka with Cointreau, passionfruit and lime (B260), and Wellington (B340), the more spirits-focused cocktail with a neat blead of single malt whiskey, sweet vermouth, with a dash of lemon bitter.
Invite’s exciting dishes, combined with a serious execution of cocktails and prices that don’t break the bank, make the notorious neighborhood of Nana worthy of some more love and, definitely, a revisit.
Soi Sukhumvit 8
Sukhumvit Road, Nana
|Opening hours:||Open daily 08:30-01:00|