For those who can’t wait till Valentine’s Day to treat their special someone to a fine dining feast, here are a few restaurant suggestions, ranging in scope from inventive Thai, to upscale casual Italian, to ultra-premium Korean.
(Hero image: Eo Mandu (fish dumpling), with sea bream mousseline, at Juksunchae)
Try the wonderfully inventive 9-course tasting menu at Baan Tepa Culinary Space
At Baan Tepa Culinary Space, Chef Chudaree “Tam” Debhakam has converted her grandmother’s old house – out on Ramkhamhaeng Road – into a fine dining restaurant, growing many of the ingredients right in the backyard. Despite the far-flung location, Baan Tepa has proved to be a hit and in December the folks in charge of Thailand’s Michelin Guide awarded it a prestigious one-star rating. The current 9-course set menu dinner (THB 4,500++; 6-course version THB 3,900++) is quite superb. As diverse as it is flavourful, it aims to both “revive ingredients” and “reimagine Thai dishes”. Definite highlights include: the trio of nam prik bite starters; the ‘Fishtake’ (trevally fish with delicately sliced, grilled shitake mushroom); chicken liver mousse glazed with tamarind sauce and served with sourdough sticky rice brioche; and Thai-raised lamb served two ways – braised neck, and roasted saddle. In addition, the fabulous chocolate tart with jackfruit and jackfruit ice cream is an absolutely scrumptious dessert! As for beverages, wine pairing options are available, or ask sommelier Giuseppe “Jo” Cola about his cool cocktails, like the negroni served in a coconut shell.
For more information and reservations, visit Baan Tepa restaurant.
Korean fine dining has arrived in Bangkok, and it goes by the name Juksunchae
Thailand is definitely crazy about all things “Korea”, there seems to be a discernible lack of proper fine dining Korean restaurants here in Bangkok. That all changed, however, with the recent opening of Juksunchae, which puts an inventive gourmet spin on traditional and contemporary Korean cuisine. Discreetly tucked away on the fifth floor of the Woodberry Common building, on Soi Ruamrudee, the kitchen at this sleek and chic dinner spot is manned by Head Chef Henry Lee – a transplanted Torontonian – and his multi-course tasting menu (THB 4,990++) is not-to-be-missed. Definite highlights include: Eo Mandu (fish dumpling), with sea bream mousseline, minced pork, grilled kimchi, bacon, seaweed powder and chive emulsion; Yukhoe Memil, in which magnolia berry is mixed with beef tartare and topped with spring onions, egg yolk sauce, and crispy buckwheat; Domi Hoe featuring thin tender slices of sea bream served with chojang sauce and slivers of compressed Korean snow pear in a pomegranate reduction; and a gorgeously decadent serving of foie gras with five chestnut-flavoured banchan (sides). In addition, prepare to have your preconceived notions of bulgogi and bibimbap firmly put to the test.
For more information and reservations, visit Juksunchae restaurant.
Otto Italian restaurant at MUU Bangkok hotel brings authentic flavours to the table
The word Otto is Italian for “eight”, which nicely reflects the fact that Otto Italian restaurant enjoys a prime location in the Thong Lor district at the ‘Eight Thonglor’ lifestyle complex. Furthermore, this newly launched dining spot is the signature F&B venue at the recently unveiled MUU Bangkok luxury hotel (which, itself, is definitely worthy of a staycation visit). Otto’s head chef is Nanthapreecha “Joe” Chamnipa, and he brings with him over a decade of experience in Italian cuisine. Highlights from his carefully curated menu include: Burrata E Pomodorini (Italian burrata with heirloom tomatoes and extra virgin olive oil); Carpaccio di Gambero di Rosso (raw red shrimp with tartare and caviar); Tagliatelle Ragu’ Bolognese (homemade tagliatelle with a rich meat sauce, slowly cooked); Risotto ai Frutti di Mare (seafood risotto with squid, prawns and black mussels); and a roasted Norway halibut fillet with sauteed greens, sauteed cube potatoes, and a red bell pepper sauce. This creative menu is paired with an intriguing wine selection that features a range of organic and one-of-a-kind labels from Italy and France.
For more information and reservations, visit Otto Italian Restaurant.