The breeze has cooled. Lockdown restrictions have been lifted. Time to go out.
Best new restaurants and cafes to try in Bangkok right now
The breeze has cooled. Lockdown restrictions have been lifted. Time to go out.
New restaurants and cafés
Bangkok doesn’t lack good spots for when a craving for delectable Chinese food kicks in. But we dare say that there aren’t many spots in the city that, in addition to serving delicious food, also offer a special sense of place. This is why Hei Yin stands out.
Located at Gaysorn Village, this Chinese restaurant is slowly gaining recognition for its focus on serving Cantonese cuisine with contemporary and stylish twists.
Renowned Chinese cooking maestro Chan Kwok Hung, heads the kitchen at Hei Yin. His strategy is to introduce playful takes to add more personality to a menu that goes from small bites like dim sum to bigger sharing plates.
Spring rolls with rice noodle and minced shrimp (B220) easily make it to the top of the list of what to order, alongside the restaurant’s signature Peking duck (B1,800), here roasted over lychee wood, which gives the dish a tantalising aroma.
Other specialties to enjoy include Hei Yin fried-rice (B780), which comes with Alaskan king crab, egg whites, fresh shrimp roe, Osietra caviar and crispy dried scallops; Hong Kong style BBQ pork spare ribs (B500); and crispy rice served with lobster bisque (B580).
Hei Yin is open daily for both lunch (11:00 to 15:00) and dinner (18:00 to 22:00). For more details and reservations, contact 08 0964 5423 or email@example.com.
The latest addition to Bangkok’s roster of Spanish restaurants is Terra. Helmed by Barcelona-born chef Sandro Aguilera, Terra (which means “soil or land” in Spanish) offers modern fare on a fine-dining level.
Before Terra, Aguilera was dominating the kitchens of hotels in Thailand for over 10 years. Now he gets to run a place where he has the complete freedom to explore and experiment with classic Spanish food.
Mediterranean influences are injected into multi-course menus for both lunch and dinner. We went there to try the Catalonian lunch set, a three-course meal that starts off with Crab Canelo, a mouth-watering appetizer that wraps crab meat and eggplant in a pasta sheet topped with spicy charcoal piquillo bechamel sauce. Charcoal Fiera Octopus comes next, which serves grilled octopus with an exciting blend of avocado mousse, black garlic, romesco sauce and beetroot.
The main course comes in three options: fish, pork or beef. Beef lovers can opt for Galician Beef Tenderloin, where premium meat imported from Spain is served with potato, mushroom and red wine sauce. Otherwise, we would recommend Citrus Steamed Sea Bass, which comes with grilled mushrooms, white asparagus and crispy fried fish skin.
For dessert, you have Berries Ways, a refreshing meal ender of Spanish strawberries, cherry sorbet and vanilla ice cream on top of sweetcorn crumble
Finding the place is not easy. You’d have to go into the Old England Students Association on Phetchaburi Road and then climb to the second floor. You know you’re in the right place when you see white marble surfaces and an open kitchen at the end of the room.
Terra is open from 11:00 to 22:00 from Tuesday to Saturday, and from 11:00 to 14:00 on Sunday. The three-course lunch set menu is priced at B1,290++, while the eight-course dinner menu is set at B3,390++. A Spanish wine-pairing is also available. For more information and reservations, contact 09 4692 6282.
Once in a while, we’ll have a hankering for a hearty serving of chunky chips and crispy battered fish. This British staple has always been a favorite when it comes to a fun and fulfilling meal with no care for calories.
Traditionally, fish and chips are prepared using cod or haddock. At new chippy Fishmonger, however, those golden bites are made using local fish. Fishmonger works with a supplier from Koh Lanta, which delivers the fresh catch to the shop within 48 hours. These include painted sweetlips, barracuda, black kingfish, grouper and John snapper, as well as more exotic “fish of the day” options like amberjack, barramundi and coral trout. The fish is prepared using a Japanese approach called ikejime, which helps keep the meat firm and fresh.
These locally sourced fish are turned into mouth-watering dishes such as classic fish and chips, big fat fish burgers, and grilled fish salad (each dish starts from B195). You can pair these with onion rings or something more “ex-squid-sit” like the Louisiana squid or, for the sake of your stomach, get both!
Fishmonger is located at art and lifestyle space GalileOasis and is open every day (except Tuesday) from 11:30 to 20:00.
If you’re always on social media looking for new restaurant ideas, you may have come across avid foodies, food bloggers and media outlets raving over No Name Noodle.
This Japanese noodle shop on Soi Sukhumvit 26, which opened less than a year ago, has become a famous spot–mostly through word of mouth–for its fresh homemade soba and less-is-more seasoning.
The place is owned by Shin Inoue, an ex-cook at Rockmen in Thonglor who took the time at the dawn of COVID-19 to learn more about the noodle culture in his home country of Japan. He then returned to Bangkok and started his own venture—a fuss-free, minimalist seven-seater noodle shop where diners sit on a counter bar and pay close attention as Chef Shin delicately cooks up his signature bowls.
As minimalist as the whole place is No Name Noodle’s menu. The menu is limited, and includes only two noodle dishes: Tokusei Shio Soba (B450) and Tokusei Kombusui Tsuke Soba (B470). The first has a hotate (scallops) and asari (saltwater clams) soup base, and come with pork chashu, chicken chashu, dashi tamago (brown egg), menma (fermented bamboo shoots), mushroom duxelles and yuzu paste.
Tokusei Kombusui Tsuke Soba is served with tsuke soba soaked in kombu dashi, pork chashu, chicken chashu, dashi tamago, menma and a separate bowl of blended shoyu tsuke soup on the side. The result is a delectable dish that makes the entire slurping experience so worthwhile.
The chef reveals that up to 30 ingredients go into each bowl, but diners are still encouraged to add more flavors into each bowl. For instance, you can sprinkle some salt on the Tsuke Soba for a heavier umami hit, add some plum vinegar for a hint of zest, or add shoyu and pepper-chilli oil to the soup.
Contributing to No Name Noodle’s buzz is the limited availability—only 35 bowls are served per day in five rounds of seven guests each. You can only order one bowl per visit. If you’re craving for more, you are welcome to order one of the shop’s rice bowls, like Wafu Buta Meshi (B180).
Booking is tough given that seating is limited. So you may want to call way ahead if you want to make a reservation. Call 08 2059 5417 to reserve a space on the counter (you can book for up to three people).
No Name Noodle is open every day except Monday. Five seating rounds take place throughout the day at 11:00, 11:45, 12:30, 13:15 and 14:00.
Saawaan stands out among the many Thai restaurants serving food with a side of gimmickry. The one-Michelin-starred restaurant is known for presenting its food in an innovative way, and now Chef Saritwat “Earth” Wanvichitkun has been introduced as the restaurant’s new head chef. The Phuket-born chef, who used to work the stoves at Mezzaluna and Nitan, is charged with churning out plates that retain Saawaan’s signature and at the same time introduce new twists and the many flavors of southern Thai cuisine.
Chef Earth proves he is up to the task with a new eight-course tasting menu, which shows off his various skills—fermenting, stir-frying, curry-making—to the fullest. The set starts with an amuse bouche of steamed fish with curry paste, served alongside deep-fried fish skin and fish sauce-seasoned rambutan. Next up is Raw, where a Jean-Paul oyster from Utah Beach in France is fermented with fish sauce, and then topped with Oxystelma flower and bitter orange.
Following closely is Fermented, one of our favorite courses. Here, Chef Earth serves river prawn from Surat Thani with homemade rice noodles and three-month-fermented mackerel. This dish best displays the fermentation technique used in the south.
In Boiled, the Le Cordon Bleu alumnus presents coconut soup with salted French Charolais beef, a dish inspired by his grandmother’s recipe. Miang comes up next, seeing four types of crabs served with four kinds of seasonal vegetables.
The next course, Charcoal, features grilled Ranong sea catfish covered with tamarind and palm sugar sauce, and served with grilled hairy eggplant and wild honey bamboo shoots. Up next is Stir-Fried, wherein Chef Earth cooks Kanchanaburi boar with his own special curry paste.
The penultimate course is a curry dish that showcases seven-day dry-aged Madame Burgaud Challans duck with a ten-chilli green curry. Rice cooked with duck stock is served on the side.
At meal’s end, pâtissière chef Arisara “Paper” Chongphanitkul chimes in with a palate cleanser and a dessert that reworks kanom chan (steamed layer cake).
Saawaan’s new eight-course dinner Saawaan is priced at B2,490++ with wine-pairing options from B850++. Call 0 2679 3775 or visit the website for more information and reservations.
Situated on the 25th floor of The Okura Prestige Bangkok, Elements, Inspired by Ciel Bleu is a joint venture with the two-Michelin-starred restaurant of the same name at The Okura Prestige Amsterdam. Ciel Blue is known for combining French and Japanese to create a unique gastronomic experience.
Spanish cooking maestro Gerard Villaret Horcajo from Ciel Bleu in Amsterdam now heads the kitchen of Elements. His strong passion for nose-to-tail cooking is seen in many dishes in the restaurant’s new Spring Guestronomic Set Journey, which is available in three options: Ku-Ki Experience (B3,800++ for four courses), Chikyu Experience (B4,600++ for six courses), and Mizu Experience (B5,900++ for eight courses).
If you opt to indulge in the eight-course set, you’ll get Blue Lobster, a dish that pairs the crustacean’s soft and flaky meat with herbs, carrot puree and tomato.
The nose-to-tail approach is embodied in Norwegian Wild Cod, a course that comes with hollandaise sauce and caviar with veloute sauce salad, as well as the fish’s crispy skin and bones on the side. The dish is balanced out by Karifurawa, which cooks cauliflower in three different ways: pureed, fried, and fermented with miso and house-made truffle oil.
Our hands-down favorite is Foie Gras, where wine sauce, peach gel and ginger are used to flavor the luxurious delicacy. A serving of crispy rice adds more texture. The main course, Kagawa Olive A5 Wagyu, also made an impression. The dish uses beef imported from the Seto Inland Sea in Kagawa, Japan, and is served with mushroom, potato gravy and beef sauce.
For a different fine-dining experience, we recommend going for the kombucha pairing (B1,100++).
Elements, Inspired by Ciel Blue is open from Wednesday to Sunday, between 18:00 and 22:30. For more details, contact 0 2687 9099 or visit their website.
Mirco Keller is no stranger to Bangkok’s fine-dining scene. The German chef first came to Thailand back in 2010 for a stint at long-established restaurant Water Library at Chamchuri Square. Over the next decade, he honed his culinary skills while exploring the essence of Thai cuisine.
Skip to early 2020, when Chef Mirco ventured out on his own and opened his own eponymous restaurant on Soi Suanplu. The establishment is a representation of the chef himself, serving delectable fare that combines various culinary cultures of Europe and Asia. “For me, cooking has no boundaries. I don’t want to limit myself to using French techniques. Adding some Asian sensibilities, like Japanese, can effectively elevate the dish as a whole,” he explains.
Keller’s menu mainly focuses on gorgeous-looking dishes influenced by the German and French food the chef enjoyed during his childhood. The flavors, however, manifest some Asian influences due to the use of regional ingredients and seasoning.
To grasp the essence of what Chef Mirco is trying to do at Keller, go for one of the multi-course tasting menus: Keller Classic (B3,700++ for seven courses) or Keller Journey (B4,900++ for nine courses). Each includes à la carte dishes available on the menu at the same price and in the same portion.
Highlights include Ōra King Salmon (B290), a starter that ignites your senses with fresh orange fish and grape seaweed drizzled with yuzu dressing; and Berliner Senfei (B490), a dish of silky-smooth potato mousse, duck egg yolk, fermented beetroot and caviar.
Fish Mousse (B790) combines hamaji and trout roe, and gets a tangy hit from lemon dressing, while Obsiblue Prawn (B1,090) injects hints of wasabi in the buttermilk sauce that’s used to top New Zealand prawn tarta.
Other fulfilling plates include Anjou Pigeon (B1,490), which showcases Chef Mirco’s zero- waste ambition through the use of different parts of the bird, from the meat, to the wing, to the heart; and Iberico Pork (B990), which is prepared using a combination of European and Chinese cooking techniques. Scallion puree, mango and a flavorful sauce help liven up the dish.
Wrap up your meal with Guava (B490), a luscious dessert made with guava juice.
Rewind back some 10 to 20 years ago, when our Nanas and Pop-pops would drag us to a so-called “cookshop” restaurant, sit us at the table, and feed us dishes like pork chop or beef stew that looked Western but had distinctly Chinese flavors.
If you happen to be one of those Gen Y-ers who had this kind of experience, then we’re happy to tell you that you can relive it again at Ang Morr, a new restaurant on Soi Sukhumvit 38 that pays homage to the Chinese-Western cuisine that was popular in Thailand back in the day.
Launched by Yuki Srikanchana of the Nara Thai Cuisine group and creative director Bhanu Inkawat, the restaurant reinvents the cookshop culinary culture that can be traced back to the era of King Rama IV, a time when Western expats settled in the Kingdom and recruited Chinese chefs to cook for them. (“Ang mor” is actually a Teochew term, and what Thai-Chinese grammys and grampys call foreigners).
The popularity of cookshop restaurants waned in the ’90s, but Yuki and Bhanu thought that it was a good time to reintroduce it to Bangkok gourmands. Stylized as a “cookshop bistro”, Ang Morr serves original cookshop fare, but with a contemporary twist.
Recommendations include sweet corn soup (B260), pork chop (B360) and beef salad (B550 to B980), as well as stir-fried sweet and sour pork (B280 to B500) that uses apricot instead of pineapple to give a tangy zing to the sauce.
Have a go at the cold tofu (B240), which comes topped with crispy salmon and a zesty dressing made with soy sauce, and the ice cream with frozen egg yolk (B320), which elevates the traditional Thai dessert.
Come and explore cookshop fare amidst luxuriously photogenic vibes at Ang Morr on Soi Sukhumvit 38. The restaurant is open every day from 11:00 to 22:00, from Monday to Thursday, and from 08:00 to 22:00 on the weekend.
Focusing on local ingredients to create elevated Thai fare is nothing new in Bangkok, but only a few fine-dining players have managed to produce results that maximize the complex flavors of each ingredient, at the same time shed light on their origins.
One of the establishments that have succeeded in doing so is 80/20, the Thai restaurant on Charoenkrung Road that describes its dishes as 80 percent local ingredients and 20 percent chef’s creativity. These days, the creativity is attributed to Canadian culinary talent Andrew Martin, who is now on his comeback stint for the restaurant.
Chef Andrew, who was 80/20’s chef when it first opened, has taken on the task of maintaining the restaurant’s Michelin-starred reputation. While some may buckle under pressure, it doesn’t seem to be the case for Andrew. In fact, he appears more confident in his revived role, and is eager to share more of what he’s learned as a chef and as a person since he’s left.
The Signature Tasting Menu - the Upgraded Version encapsulates the essence of 80/20 and Chef Andrew’s competence. The menu consists of 15 big and small bites made with local surf and turf ingredients, with the main course paying tribute to the Samrub-style dining custom.
The meal kicks off with tiny bites that function like flavor bombs in your mouth. One reworks khanom buang (Thai crepe) as a savory bite, while another wraps a peanut ball within a strawberry.
These morsels are followed by a tangy palate-cleansing drink, and more small, flavor-rich dishes such as an excellent gaeng som curry, a spicy roasted prawn, and Chinese fried rice with pan-seared dry-aged duck.
The main course is a Samrub set comprising red curry with grilled beef and deep-fried reef cod, both served with assorted pickled vegetables and jasmine rice.
Each dish packs a range of intense flavors that shock the palate, so intense that they may be too strong for diners who prefer milder tastes. (Don’t say you weren’t warned.) The spice, however, is balanced out by the subtle sweetness of two impressive desserts—a grilled chocolate with black sesame and lychee jelly, and coconut ice cream and cake with guava fruit.
The verdict: 80/20 is worth it. The Upgraded Signature Tasting Menu may be a bit pricey at B3,500++, but its value lies in how each dish is beautifully presented and how the entire set displays how far Thai cuisine can go. More importantly, the rather casual and rough-around-the edges ambience of 80/20 is a perfect starting point for those who wish to try on the fine-dining experience for the first time without feeling too awkward by all the white table cloth manners prevalent in other establishments.
Bangkok has one of the most diverse food scenes in the world. You can find practically any cuisine here, and thanks to Chef Aleksandrs Nasikailovs, it’s now even possible to have Latvian fare in the city.
At the White House, located on Soi Sukhumvit 16, the Latvian native serves refined fare from his own country with contemporary European twists. Chef Aleksandrs first came to Thailand as a chef for Baltic Blunos, but put up his own venture soon after parting ways with Chef Martin Blunos’ establishment.
Despite the elegant food, the restaurant is actually stylized as a smart-casual place where guests can come and enjoy either beautifully prepared tasting menus or tantalizing à la carte dishes. Diners can enjoy live music while savoring their food on the first floor or opt for a more intimate ambience on the second floor. Regardless of the setting, you’re promised an amazing meal that’s enhanced by artistic presentation and crockery that are handmade by the chef himself.
The White House Experience (B4,000++) is a tasting menu that best captures the essence of Chef Aleksandrs’ cooking. Comprising over 10 courses, the menu is dependent on the ingredients of the season. On our visit, we were served Gillardeau oysters, which came with raspberry vinaigrette and yogurt pearls; hand-dived deep-sea scallops with hollandaise and Baeri sturgeon caviar; and a rack of lamb elevated with black garlic paste and green peppercorn sauce.
The meal is rounded up by homemade chocolate that come in various shapes and flavors.
For a better dining experience, pair the food with the cocktails made by Japanese mixologist Kei Sawada. He will amaze you with a selection of weird and wonderful concoctions that make use of unlikely ingredients such as wasabi and blue cheese. Don’t think twice and get the cocktail pairing option (B1,500++).
At the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic last May, Panaporn “Claire” Hamhunsa and her Polish boyfriend ventured into Bangkok's baked goods scene by offering pączki, or deep-fried Polish donuts, for delivery.
“We started out casually, making these for ourselves during our free time,” Claire recounts. “Then we made some more for our friends who loved them and later asked if they could order.” What started out as a kitchen hobby then turned into a serious business.
After almost a year of sending out pączki to people in Bangkok (mostly expats), Holy Donut Pączkarnia now has its own physical shop in Suanluang Square. It’s the sole spot in the city where guests and pastry lovers can get an authentic taste of these Polish treats.
“We use a recipe that has been passed down for generations within my boyfriend’s family,” Claire shares. “These donuts are actually culturally important to Christians in Poland, especially during Fat Thursday where people heavily feast on food before going on religious fasting. Pączki is especially popular during this time.”
Pączki also has certain characteristics and ingredients that differentiate it from the donut we are used to. “The dough, to begin with, is denser and chewier than American donuts,” Claire describes. “And the round shape has a ring around it from being deep-fried.”
Vodka is also added to the mixture. It “prevents the dough from absorbing the cooking oil”, but evaporates in the deep-frying process. Claire also points out that, commonly, pączki have only a small amount of filling, which could be any flavor from berry fruits to sweet creams. But Holy Donut Pączkarnia, as Claire assures, is generous when it comes to loading up their donuts.
The shop offers nine flavors in total, including the signature Krem Mleczny (B55), which is stuffed with luscious vanilla custard, Nutella (B75), Apple Pie (B75), and Lemon Poppy Seed (B65).
These delectable donuts are best paired with cold brew coffee (B50) or a milky foam option called Warsaw Fog (B60). You can also have them with one of their milkshakes (B99 each).
Holy Donut Pączkarnia is also planning to include savory fare in the menu, like zapiekanki or Polish pizzas (B130).
The café is located in Suanluang Square (Soi Chula 5, Ban Tad Thong) and is open daily (except Tuesday) from 09:00 to 19:00.
It never ceases to amaze foodies how a chef can transform seemingly regular ingredients into one amazing culinary journey. That’s the case with Small Dinner Club (SCD), a new restaurant situated at community space Charoen 43 that’s headed by Chef Sareen Rojanamatin, who just arrived back in Thailand after years of working in Australia,
SCD is a reflection of the chef, who exudes introverted and artistic personalities. The venue’s gallery-like ambience and dark-hued decor provides the ideal setting for his creativity to flourish.
The restaurant welcomes only 12 diners per day. From the first floor, which could very well be a mini-gallery, guests are escorted to the upper floor and seated at a long table that provides a clear view of the chef in action.
A brief introduction accompanies each course (there are 16) and it soon becomes evident that SDC is another spot that attempts to showcase the possibilities of unconventional ingredients sourced from all over Thailand.
What Goes Up Must Come Down is one of the more surprising courses. Everyone at the table was convinced they were munching on a deep-fried corn ball, but it turned out to be a chrysanthemum flower. Then there’s She Put de Lime in de Coconut, which makes one think they’re eating only coconut meat, when there are actually seafood and various fruits mixed in.
Our highest praise goes to Too Many Italians, Only One Asian, a dish that Chef sareen reckons best reflects a fusion of Thai and international flavors. We also can’t say enough about Daft Punk Is Playing in My Mouth, an intriguing offering that reimagines spicy tom yum soup as a frozen bite with Thai mackerel.
Duck & Hide is probably the most unexpected in the roster, pairing dry-aged duck meat with a grilled banana. Kudos to the chef for coming up with the combo.
The multi-course dinner ends with Life of Rice, which brilliantly showcases the many ways to prepare rice, from roasting, to steaming, to fermenting.
SDC’s debut tasting menu is priced at B4,500++ for 16 courses. The restaurant is open from Thursday to Sunday, from 18:00.
Ciao Terrazza—the poshed-up version of a trattoria, Mandarin Oriental-style—has reopened at the hotel’s riverside terrace, fronting the century-old Author’s Wing. Patrons will be able to relish hearty Italian dishes while enjoying views of the Chao Phraya River. Unlike the hotel’s more sophisticated outlets, such as Le Normandie and Lord Jim’s, Ciao is a more casual venue that features modern black tabletops and sleek bronze table lamps.
This March, Italian sous chef Dario Busnelli wants to take gourmands on a journey through his childhood memories in Milan. The chef has put together a line-up of dishes that he remembers eating back in the day and follows the very own recipes of his aunt who, until now, still influences his cooking.
Highlights from the updated menu include two starters: king fish marinated in passionfruit with crudité and Kaviari caviar, and Frittino Di Mare, a dish of deep-fried carabineros prawns, Atlantic Sea bream and calamari.
Chef Dario’s take on the classic lasagna has delectable shank wagyu, which gives a meatier flavor to the dish, while his risotto has hints of Champagne and perfectly cooked giant octopus.
Wrap up your meal at Ciao Terrazza with an apple strudel. The dish isn’t essentially Italian, but the warm pastry holds a special place in the Chef’s heart thanks to his beloved aunt.
Ciao Terrazza is open throughout March for dinner from Friday and Tuesday, at 18:00 to 23:00.
“Hello, Papi!” was the very enthusiastic greeting from Willy Trullàs Moreno, the quirky and highly energetic chef behind new tapas restaurant El Willy Kitchen.
Located on Soi Sukhumvit 51, the restaurant is as welcoming as its owner. A playful collection of pop art and boldly colored decor inject life into an intimate space mostly decorated with retro-style furniture.
This Bangkok endeavor follows El Willy’s original branch in Shanghai, which opened back in 2007. You can say that serendipity is behind this second outlet—the pandemic found Chef Willy stranded in Bangkok in 2020 with his family and an eventual familiarity with the city planted the idea of expanding his culinary empire.
“I want it to have the concept of a happy Spanish kitchen where people can come and enjoy fun and sexy food,” Chef Willy says. “It’s always the thing I wanted to do back in the beginning of my career 14 years ago.”
As the 44-year-old chef explains, “sexy food” is part of El Willy’s brand identity and DNA. “We want to make things fun, sexy and happy.” And spicy—the dishes served at the Bangkok branch have more zing to them to please the Thai palate.
Explosion de Salmon y Trufa (B460/4 pieces) seems to be a favorite. The starter pairs smoked salmon with silky-smooth yogurt and truffle-infused honey drops. It’s a fantastic way to kick off the evening’s meal. For something lighter, go for Tira de Vieira (B580), where fresh scallops are soaked with mashed avocado and tiger’s milk sauce—or Tostada de Atún (B260), a crispy corn tostada topped with tuna, avocado, and smoked chili.
Follow these up with the mixed seafood paella (B1,490), which can be served dry or with a bit of sauce, or the charcoal-grilled Spanish rib-eye steak (B490/100g), which uses Vaca Cebona beef.
Though El Willy Kitchen specializes in à la carte dishes, the restaurant can also prepare a set menu experience specially curated by Chef Willy.
Currently, the restaurant is open from Tuesday to Sunday for dinner (17:00 to 22:45), but is also open for lunch on Saturday from 11:30 to 15:00.
Ultra-luxurious establishment Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok has revealed a patisserie of its own on its riverside promenade. In contrast to the hotel’s overall sumptuous aesthetics, Café Madeleine is a casual and friendly place where you can sit back with soothing drinks and delicious fresh bakes the whole day long.
Besides freshly-baked pastries like croissants, canelés and their signature madeleines, the hotel cafe also specializes in modern-looking cakes in six signature flavors, namely Gianduja Chocolate and Hazelnut Mousse, Yoghurt Strawberry Sponge Cake, Mango and Passion Fruit Cheesecake, Fresh Fruit Tart, Coconut & Pandan Choux, and Bronte Pistachio Cake. These are available in three different sizes: petit mignon (from B95), mono portion (from 180) and a whole cake (from B1,250).
Executive pastry chef Andrea Bonaffini is the talent behind these wonderful offerings. His resume reveals impressive stints at the likes of three-Michelin-starred The Fat Duck in England and self-opened Yellow Lemon in Taiwan. With his close connections to Asia, Chef Andrea has injected the region’s many rich flavors into some of his creations, like the Passionfruit & Coconut madeleine. These delicious bites also come in two other flavors: Chocolate & Cacao Caramel Nib and Raspberry & Vanilla (B420/box of six).
Café Madeleine also offers tasty nibbles like cantucci, cookies and palmiers, as well as takeaway boxes of hearty salads and sandwiches. Drinks include café-appropriate items ranging from medium-roast coffees to tea to fizzy refreshments.
After years of running around the kitchens and front of the house at many respected restaurants like Canvas and Sühring, Pikun “Kate” Wangsantia finally put up her fine-dining venture. The capable restaurateur now runs a “secret supper club” where she cooks off menu and according to her mood.
“I have a room in my building that serves as the perfect casual private dining place where friends can meet up with trusted friends and without judgement to chat, drink and dine, and with safety measures in place,” she says. “I didn’t know what a supper club was, but it turns out that it is what I am doing!”
Kate’s Place is located on the second floor of her shophouse. Hidden behind a secret bookshelf (sorry for spoiling the fun), the space feels and looks like the living room of a stylish home. All the fun is centered on a huge dining table that can accommodate as much as 10 people.
At this homey station, Kate, who did a Cooking Master Class in Chiang Mai and also operates a daytime endeavor called Boonlang Braised Chicken Noodles, uses the word “uplifting” to describe the food at her new restaurant. “It’s not about dish presentation or fancy restaurant design, but the food and the environment should make you feel welcome, comforted and happy.” The “Uplifting Thai Cuisine” set menu is Kate’s signature offering but, in the spirit of carte blanche cooking, the theme keeps rotating monthly. “We would often give the dining sessions a theme, such as Cheeseboard Sundays or Thai-Chinese or Isan Night to spice things up.”
We were introduced to a Chinese-inspired feast on our visit. Separated into two parts, the course started with small bites: deep-fried Golden Bag dumpling, laab squid, stir-fried vermicelli and crab meat, stuffed chicken wing, and tom kha soup with cabbage and scallops.
Four delicious main dishes followed, namely steamed red grouper with soy sauce, strawberry-infused panang curry with beef (our favorite), stir-fried prawns with chili and lime, and salted soybean paste and fresh vegetables. The meal ended with a dessert of wild tapioca with coconut cream and water chestnuts.
These days, many restaurants are trying to stand out by going overboard with the story behind their cuisine and food that focuses more on style over substance, but that’s not the case with Kate’s Place. The simplicity of each dish manifests how the chef herself is humbly aware of what she’s capable of as a cook—which is a lot more than others can claim.
Kate’s Place is now open for both private dining from 2-12 guests, with the Uplifting Thai Cuisine offered at a special price of B990 per person during the fresh opening. For more information and reservations, please visit its official Instagram and Facebook.
It took five years, since the initial launch of the Michelin Guide back in 2017, for a Chinese restaurant in Thailand to be awarded a star. Yu Ting Yuan, the Chinese dining room at Four Seasons Bangkok, holds this recognition, and it is well-deserved.
Helmed by executive Chinese chef Qiu Xiaogui, Yu Ting Yuan promises authentic, fusion-free dishes from the Canton region. But you just don’t come for the food, you come for the dining experience.
“Yu Ting Yuan is a destination restaurant. The way you see this restaurant is created by the whole atmosphere, from the art pieces to the water features,” Chef Qiu explains. “No [other] Chinese restaurant in town has this kind of setting. The music, for instance, is curated from a playlist of non-traditional upbeat music.” He also refers to the 88-seat arrangement, a feature meant to enhance the restaurant’s good fortune.
Yu Ting Yuan’s commitment to “making the best dishes” extends to how it sources only the best ingredients from both local and international sources—abalone, dried seafood and cooking wine are imported from the mainland, while geese are sourced from Hong Kong and pork from Vietnam. This practice assures that the food’s authenticity is “not compromised”. Each dish is prepared in a simple manner, using traditional cooking techniques, which, as Chef Qiu explains, is in the true style of Cantonese cooking,
Expect classic seafood fare such as Lobster & Seafood Dumpling (B250), Braised Sea Cucumber with Millet (B1,850) and Supreme Fish Maw in Abalone Sauce (B1,450). The meat offerings boast the Signature Barbecue Selection (B640), which has roasted pork belly, crispy pork belly and barbecue suckling pig.
Those lucky enough to get a sought-after reservation after January 19 can indulge in new dishes such as Cordyceps Flower Mushroom Dumpling and Thousand-Layer Crisp Roll with Prawns. The latter is a moreish dish that reworks deep-fried spring rolls.
The updated menu will also include Deep-Fried Canadian Lobster with Steamed Egg White, and Wild Almond and Braised Winter Melon with Crab and Dry Scallops.
Some may question Yu Ting Yuan’s explosive debut in the Michelin Guide this year, but we assure you that its star was rightfully awarded. The restaurant excels in all aspects—it offers great food, great vibes and great service.