Bangkok is quickly evolving into one of the world’s best fine-dining destinations
Thanks to its cosmopolitan vibe, multiculturalism and flourishing gastronomic scene over the past decade, Bangkok has rapidly become “the” destination for foodies and refined restaurateurs. Travellers from far and wide journey to Thailand’s capital to soak in the culture and savour the authentic tastes of Thai and international cuisine in world-class fine-dining establishments, while renowned restaurant brands, Michelin-starred chefs and celebrity chefs see Bangkok as a receptive home for their outlets.
By Manta Klangboonkrong, Luxury Society Asia, TAT Team
Thanks to Bangkok’s strategic location and the openness of the local culture, cuisine from around the world is flourishing. Five-star hotels and high-end establishments regularly invite Michelin-starred chefs for special-guest chef dinners, while resident chefs come from every corner of the globe to work in the city and hone their skills and creativity in creating menus that transcend any one particular cuisine. These are then matched with crafted cocktails from Bangkok’s ever-evolving cocktail scene.
A magical and inspiring destination for food lovers, decent meals can be found all over the city, especially in world-class complexes such as the recently launched Mahanakhon Cube – the city’s new landmark with exciting choices for foodies – as well as Icon Siam, the mega shopping and dining destination on the banks of the Chao Phraya River. Adding to the jaw-dropping list of celebrity chef restaurants.
Meanwhile, Bangkok-based chefs are sharpening their knives and minds for some exciting projects. This year alone we have seen many Michelin chefs from around the globe cooking wonders in the city, while the Sühring brothers from Germany, who gained Michelin star and a reputation with modern cuisine, have returned to their roots and brought classic German food to the Sühring. Here are some of the city’s greatest restaurants to add to your dining agenda.
Jay Fai – Delicious Street Food – Pratu Phee District
Jay Fai – the famous shop-house vendor located in the Pratu Phee District has been opened for more than 35 years. Jay Fai has become the first and only street food vendor in Thailand to be awarded with 1 Michelin Star as a guarantee for the outstanding delicious food that has made her well-known worldwide.
The uniqueness of the restaurant that Jay Fai is famous for is the quality and quantity of the ingredients that she selectively put in her dishes. They are fresh, clean, in large chunks and plentifully put together. The enticing aroma of cooking with charcoal stove also invites the passerby to stop and taste the signature menus of the restaurant.
Jay Fai offers an extensive menu, for instance, Kai Jeow Puu, (Crab Meat Omelet) the signature dish which is made with huge chucks of crab meat packed in the omelet. Also, Rad Na Talay (fried rice noodle with gravy and seafood) is another signature dish made with fresh ingredients such as squid, grouper and fresh large river shrimp. Aside from these two signature dishes, there are many more delicious menus on offer that even customers are willing to wait throughout the whole night to experience.
Saneh Jaan – Taste the authentic zesty Thai food in a contemporary atmosphere
Saneh Jaan is an authentic Thai traditional restaurant showcasing royal palace culinary cuisine of exceptionally high standard. Delicate craftsmanship, that shows the genuine Thai food with zesty bold flavors yet a blend of taste that has a precise balance that placed Saneh Jaan in one of the 14 Michelin 1 star restaurant.
The atmosphere in the restaurant is decorated in a combination of traditional Thai and modern design. Each wall is adorned with gallery pictures of important landmarks in Thailand and also added to the beautiful ambiance are poetry written by ” Mr. Nawarat Pongpaiboon”, a Thai National Literature and S.E.A. Write Awarded writer.
The menu is created by “Chef Pom”, who carefully selects the finest ingredients in every step of the culinary process, and manage to develop exceptional recipes to enhance the taste of the dishes without leaving traditional Thai flavors. These dishes are presented in a la carte or set menu setting for your choice.
Bo Lan – Natural, Seasonal, Creative, Delicious menu – a must to experience
“Bo Lan” a Thai Restaurant in the Sukhumvit area was awarded one of the 50 best restaurants in Asia, by The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy. It is a premium Thai restaurant that has been opened for over 7 years by husband and wife chefs, “Chef Bo, Duangporn Songvisava ” and “Chef Dylan Jones” who are fond of fresh produce from local farmers to use them in every dishes.
Because of their love for Thai agriculture, the interior of the restaurant is decorated with recycled furniture, using a glass bottle instead of a plastic bottle to make this place a friendly and cozy restaurant amidst the center of Bangkok.
Bo Lan’s dishes are available in a set menu that is uniquely created based on the seasonal ingredients. You will experience authentic Thai food with ingredients that have been meticulously chosen with mellow and balanced flavors, and furthermore, all this is remarkably based on a foundation of being a zero carbon footprint restaurant.
Sri Trat – Indulge in Thai traditional folk food in the heart of the city
“Sri Trat”, a local restaurant from Trat province, situated in Soi Sukhumvit 33, offers the cuisine perfectly blending the traditional fold Thai food of the east and the home cooking techniques like the way mom used to make. Creating the delicious menus will entice everyone that passes to come in for a tastes.
The Thai restaurant is decorated in a modern style blended with the way of living of the Eastern Thai province. Decoration is a mixture of the Thai local styles with red brick color scheme which is eye catching and attractive, welcoming passerby to come and try the delicious Eastern Thai traditional folk food.
The ingredients are specifically selected, such as fish sauce, curry paste, fish paste and certain seafood, must be from Trat province as to give its authenticity. This, combines with the home-style culinary, produces delicious local food that fulfills the appetite of everyone
Chim by Siam Wisdom – A Taste of Thai fusion in an Authentic Thai atmosphere.
“Chim by Siam Wisdom” A Thai restaurant in the Sukhumvit Area situated in the atmosphere of Thai traditional houses that are over 50 years old. The infamous “Iron Chef”, Chef Chumphon Changprai will create a delicious menus of authentic Thai food for customers to enjoy the experience. Exceptional quality food and services is guaranteed by the Michelin 1 Star Award.
Amidst the modernity of Sukhumvit, no one will think that there are Thai traditional houses and Thai arts hidden in the surrounded tall modern buildings. The atmosphere outside the restaurant is of the traditional Thai design however the interior of the restaurant is decorated in a contemporary Thai style with a bit of serenity and simplicity. Where ever you look, you will feel the characteristic charm of the Thai traditional houses in the olden times.
The “Chim by Siam Wisdom” menu offers Thai dishes that perfectly blends the ancient and the modern. Available to choose in both A la Carte or Set Menu that gives a variety of the Thai dishes giving it a perfect taste combination.
Gaggan – Experience delicious Indian cuisine with world class awards
“Gaggan” a famous and progressive Indian restaurant in Lang Suan District, is the winner of the Michelin 2 Star Award and presented with the best restaurant in Asia 2018 (The Asia’s 50 Best Restaurant 2018). World-renown Chef Gaggan Anand with his creative culinary skill, constantly creates new and innovative dishes. Each menu is fresh and creative which has made Gaggan become the best restaurant in the world in 2017 and the No. 1 Best Restaurant in Asia with the rankings of the World’s Best Restaurant for 3 years consecutive running.
The interior of the house is decorated in traditional and vintage style that gives the welcoming feeling as if you were dining with someone who really knows you. A personal waitress is on hand to provide table services and gives constant suggestions for various menus. It feels like you are traveling through India with a guide from the restaurant which leaves you with the most impressive and exceptionally enjoyable meal to have.
The specialty of the restaurant is not just the warm and welcoming atmosphere. The wonderful surprise is a 25 menu dishes in one course. Amazingly, each dish is so complex you will likely be able to detect only a few ingredients of each menu. After finishing the course, there is a detailed explanation of the background of each menu. This is highlight of the experience that Chef Gaggan Anand prides himself. His goal is for each and every patron to dine at the Gaggan Restaurant with an open mind and to be thrilled and amazed with every dish that is being served.
Le Normandie – Let the atmosphere delight your dining experience
“Le Normandie”, a French restaurant with magnificent river view at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel is awarded 2 Michelin stars. This French restaurant by the river is famous for its exquisite taste, beautiful presentation, finest quality ingredients, and impressive services within a charming atmosphere inside the restaurant and scenic view of Chao Phraya River outside.
The interior is classic, luxurious, spacious, clean and warm by the white tone interior decoration. Enjoy the dining experience amidst the view of the Chao Phraya River.
The French restaurant “Le Normandie” offers a fine dining experience of French cuisine. All ingredients are carefully selected to only have the freshest and highest quality ingredients from the original sources such as France, Spain, Norway, and Italy. The vegetables are from the Royal Project Foundation. All menus are prepared by the chef from France with exceptional culinary skill and techniques accompanying by their excellent services to impress your fine dining experience.
Mezzaluna – Turn your ordinary dinner into the most impressionable romantic dinner ever.
“Mezzaluna” a European-Style restaurant at le bua Hotel in Bangrak District is also well known as “The Dome at State Tower”. Leading by the finest chef from Japan, Chef Ryuki Kawasaki, who creates delicious dishes that harmoniously incorporating the European and Japanese cultures together. 2 Michelin Stars was awarded as a guarantee for their delicious menu and striking atmosphere.
Amidst the simplicity but yet elegant atmosphere, the interior decoration is highlighted by the half-moon shaped layout matching and harmonizing with the meaning of the name “Mezzaluna”.
You will enjoy the beauty of the lights and sounds of the spectacular panoramic view of the Bangkok nightlife. This breathtaking view will leave you with the most romantic an unforgettable dining experience.
Mezzaluna’s Chef’s Tasting Menus are available in 2 options – 4 courses or 7 courses. This includes wine pairing that balances the taste perfectly with the courses. The 7 courses menu is reinvented each day varying on the freshest and availability of the ingredients or based on the chef’s creativity of that particular day. This makes the culinary experience unforgettable with surprises and unpredictability. Mezzaluna also offers an extensive range of wine listing to enjoy in the midst of a beautiful and impressive atmosphere.
Nahm at The Como Metropolitan – Taste the re-created authentic Thai cuisine
Nahm – a Thai restaurant at COMO Metropolitan Bangkok Hotel was awarded 1 Michelin Star for its authentic Thai royal cuisine created by the masterful Chef David Thomson. Guests will get a chance to re-experience the authentic Thai royal cuisine which has been long forgotten. Nahm has achieved great feat to being awarded Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants in a very short period of time since its opening.
The interior design of Nahm is inspired by Ayutthaya art that reminiscences the beautiful temples during that period. The attention to details of the design can be seen throughout the restaurant, from the intricate wooden carving mural to the exquisite tableware.
Thai royal cuisine menus are skillfully created based on the ingredients that can be found locally. The food is carefully put together to produce the exceptional taste throughout the menus, from the appetizers to the main courses. Available in A La Carte based on your preference or in a set menu which is creatively combined by the chef.
Sra Bua by Kiin Kiin – Taste Modern Thai Cuisine In Thai Fusion Restaurant
Sra Bua by Kiin Kiin, Thai-style restaurant at Siam Kempinski Hotel Bangkok is awarded 1 Michelin-star for its exceptional creation of fine Thai dining in modern interpretation conceptualized by a Danish chef, “Chef Henrik Yde Andersen ” and “Chef Chayavee Sujaritjan”.
The atmosphere of the restaurant is elegant and modern, reflecting the unique Thai identity. It is surrounded by nature with lotus flowers to amplify the relaxing sensation during your fine dining experience.
Sra Bua by Kiin Kiin offers a variety of menu choices including A la carte and set menu which the chefs have skillfully created with their extraordinary culinary talent for you to enjoy the beauty and the deliciousness of the dishes. Entertainment comes not only from indulging the delectable meals, but also the method to indulge each dish is unique and enjoyable for everyone to experience like no other restaurant can offer.
Manta Klangboonkrong a Bangkok-based avid lifestyle writer with vast interests in food, drinking culture and travel. For 13 years she has traveled extensively both in Thailand and overseas, looking for stories, insights and unique experiences to share with her readers.