Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Thailand Day 20

Pak Boong Loy Fa, Pattaya

I've walked by this place several times until I finally sat down to give it a try. I actually went twice already since then, but the first time I didn't have my camera with me when I had a green seafood curry sizzling on a hot pan. That curry was so amazing that I came back and ordered this hot and sour fish that was served in a fish shaped pan over a small fire.

I've eaten great here both times but I would recommend having an Imodium ready if you have a bit of a sensitive stomach like I do since the dishes here are rather spicy.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Thailand Day 19

Fondue Bourguignonne at Restaurant Swiss Food

In Soi Diamond, a cross street to the famous walking street in Pattaya, there's at least one more other swiss restaurant besides Swiss Food. I got introduced to this place by my good friend and real estate agent, Tommi.

This time I brought my friends Andrew and Muchi and we ordered a fondue bourguignonne.

Unlike the cheese fondue, you don't dip bread into cheese, instead you'll cook beef in the boiling oil and then dip it into your favorite sauce. There's a selection of different sauces arranged on your plate around the raw bite-sized beef pieces.

The fondue at Restaurant Swiss Food tastes great! I can't remember I had such a good one before in Switzerland. It's served together with a bowl of french fries, which are very good as well.

We've ordered Tommi's favorite bottle of red wine here, the Puglia Primitivo from italy.

Restaurant Swiss Food
175/29 Soi Diamond

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Thailand Day 18

Kiss Food & Drink

This place is a bit like Denny's in the US besides the fact that they do serve good food here. At least the thai dishes taste very fine, I haven't tried the burgers or wienerschnitzel which they also offer on their menu.

The kitchen is open around the clock and the outdoor seating is quite interesting to watch the people go by at 4 in the morning.

From my last visit I also remember it from sitting there at a table with very heavy tropical rain outside. It's quite fun eating here while watching the water level on the streets rise.

Because Kiss Food & Drink never closes, it seems to attract quite a few 'farangs' (westerners) with their thai 'girlfriends'. While the guy can eat his cheeseburger here, she'll be more happy to order a spicy som tam (papaya salad).

This time, we ordered a deep fried snapper and a ruby fish, which is a hybrid fish raised in the northern parts of thailand, originally an idea by the king to feed the people up north. I like their way of deep frying fish a lot as it's not greasy, the meat stays tender and the outside gets nice and crispy. The meat gets easily scraped off with a spoon and tastes great with a few drops of chili infused fish sauce.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Thailand Day 17

Casa Pascal

What can I say... This is probably still my favorite restaurant in the world! Pascal is originally from Korea but got adopted by a swiss family when he was a small child. He was raised in Lucerne, Switzerland, followed by a long journey (chef in Hong Kong, head of the kitchen at the Dusit in Thailand) and now has his own restaurant in Pattaya, Thailand.

His food is fantastic! While some recipes are very sophisticated like his goose liver terrine for example, you'll also find simple and hearty dishes on his menu like beef stew, wild mushroom risotto and spaghetti.

The dishes are perfectly prepared and amaze me every time I go there. I keep finding myself asking the question why his dishes taste so great! It's a new experience each and every time!

A very special occasion is the sunday brunch as well, which happens only from october through march I believe. Simply put, it's by far the best brunch buffet I've ever seen!

The restaurant itself offers a very warm and friendly atmosphere, beautifully lit, with lots of attention to small details.

Casa Pascal is a 'must' if you like to treat yourself to a great evening of fantastic food prepared by master chef Pascal and his wonderful wife, Kim.

Casa Pascal
485/4 Moo 10, Second Road

Our bottle of Amarone gets decantered and warmed over a candle.

Still one of my favorite red wines, the Amarone is a full-bodied italian treat!

Amuse bouche, fresh crab cake.

Pascal's famous goose liver terrine. Amazing!

Maybe the best ravioli I've had in the last 10 years, with goose and beans filling.

A wonderful risotto with black truffles.

Creme brulee, with orange slices inside. It was good, but the desserts are not Pascal's highlights.

A good espresso with very delicous cookies made by Pascal as well.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Thailand Day 16

Nang Nual Seafood, Pattaya

This is one of the oldest restaurants in Pattaya and it's famous for its amazing selection of very fresh seafood of all kinds: lobsters, crabs, prawns, mussels, oysters, you name it.

It's located directly on the busy and famous "Walking Street" in Pattaya, but what you might not notice first is, that it has a nice outside seating directly above the ocean.

Everything goes by weight. You get a plastic basket, choose your seafood and then give it to them to measure the weight. They'll recommend a way of preparing your food, steamed, grilled, with or without sauce. Since the seafood at this place is always so fresh, I like my food prepared without any special ingredients, usually just grilled and then sprinkled with lemon juice.

Another highlight is the vegetable buffet. The same concept applies as for the seafood, you choose your veggies, put them in a basket and they'll "wok" them for you. The veggies here are always perfectly prepared, never overcooked and very crunchy.

Nang Nual is not cheap though for a seafood place in Thailand, especially if you're ordering some of their big lobsters. But you'll get the freshest and best ever!

Tiger Prawns. My favorite!

Many types of fish. I chose a cotten fish grilled while wrapped in banana leaves.

Weighing a crab.

A lobster on the scale.

Picking from many types of vegetables.

After you choose, they'll "wok" the veggies. Delicious!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Thailand Day 15

Breakfast at Dynasty Inn, Bangkok

For the longest time, I tried to stick to western style breakfast, toast, eggs, bacon etc. since I never thought hot soup to be an appropriate breakfast. But I'm slowly starting to convert and even add extra chili!

This simple thai breakfast is a clear soup with boiled rice, pork, chicken, shrimp or squid with a few chopped up spring onions and roasted garlic. I've also chosen to add an egg which gets added raw into the hot soup.

I find that type of breakfast very soothing and relaxing for the stomach, as long as it's not too spicy. But I still ordered a side of toast and jam and some coffee to wake up ;-)

Speaking of the Dynasty Inn, I should also add here that I like to stay at their hotels quite a bit. They're also offering a free shuttle service between their hotels in Bangkok and Pattaya as long as you stay a minimum of 2 nights. They're very well located with clean rooms at about 25$/night in Bangkok and 30$/night in Pattaya. The 24-hour restaurant at the Dynasty Inn in Bangkok serves some great thai food too! As always, feel free to email me if you'd like to get some more info.

Dynasty Inn, Bangkok
Sukhumvit Soi 4 (Soi Nana)
next to the big Nana Entertainment Complex

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Thailand Day 14

Bei Otto - German Dinner in Bangkok

"Bei Otto", which translates from german to "At Otto's", is apparently one of two really great german restaurants in Bangkok. Chef Otto started in Bangkok in 1981 at the Singha Bierhaus until he opened his own restaurant with a delicatessen store right next to it. He also runs his own butcher shop to make his own german sausages.

The sauerkraut is imported from germany and the mashed potatoes taste just like 'at home'.

The atmosphere inside is also quite authentic resembling a german hunter's lodge. The clientel was, not surprisingly, mainly german, but we did spot a few local thais and also japanese tourists.

This was a real treat. I'll go back there for more, also to do some grocery shopping next door in the deli store.

Highly recommended!

Bei Otto
1 Soi 20 Sukhumvit Road, Bangkok

Pretzel-like bread with coarse salt outside.

Munich-style white sausages (Weisswuerste) with sweet mustard.

Fantastic pork knuckle with great sauerkraut.

Assorted grilled and boiled german sausages made by Otto's own butcher shop.

A must to accompany good german food: Erdinger Hefeweizen.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Thailand Day 13

Muchi's Chicken

A few nights ago, Andrew's and Muchi's kitchen was once again in action and Muchi made a very nice filled chicken for a few guests we had. The recipe came out of a japanese book, so I won't try to translate it here for you.

Back in LA, I've prepared a few filled chicken recipes as well. You might want to click
here or here to take a look.

Gianni Ristorante

In terms of italian restaurants in Bangkok, you'll find quite a few. Some of them are really great, like Zanotti for example. But since I've been there several times already, we went to another place this time, called Gianni.

The atmosphere is upscale, the prices not as high as at Zanotti. The duck liver appetizer I had was around $10, the venison main dish about $15.

As always, it gets very expensive with the wine. Wine prices in Thailand are high already anyway, making it even more noticable in a restaurant.

The food was good, even though not great. While the duckliver was fantastic, the raspberry sauce that was a bit too sweet for my taste, could have been a bit more subtle. The venison with the walnut crust was nice too, but again, something was missing to make it perfect.

Maybe I'm just a bit too picky right now about italian food after visiting New York last month where we've eaten some of the best italian food ever! But then again, the numbers on the bill were quite different as well!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Thailand Day 12

Beard Papa

What a weird name! This place specialized in doing cream puffs originally comes from japan. The first time I had one of those was in L.A. when Mizue brought over a few delicious puffs to our place. To find out more about the locations, check out their website www.muginohousa.com.

Walking through Siam Paragon with Muchi the other day, we were pleasantly surprised to see a little Beard Papa shop there. If you're one of those knowing Muchi, then you know how much she loves sweets and that's the beginning of an addiction.

They cost about 1$ each and are filled with cream right when you order them so they don't get mushy. A must try!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Thailand Day 11

Roesti in Pattaya

George, who's building the house for me outside Pattaya, was telling me several times about this little thai restaurant in a small village that prepares an authentic swiss roesti and zuerigschnetzlets (veal in cream sauce). I had a hard time believing it until he actually took me there a few days ago.

The thai chef at that place used to work in a swiss restaurant before and prepares a wonderful roesti with veal. For a roesti recipe, click here.

Chinese Dinner at Chine Chine Bangkok

Chine Chine is an upscale chinese restaurant in Bangkok, run by a friend of Andrew's mom. The cozy atmosphere with above average long seats and the subtle jazzy piano and vocal background music, make for a very pleasant evening. One of Chine Chine's specialty is pigeon.
Chine Chine
2nd Floor J. Avenue
Thonglor 15, Bangkok

Duck tongue fried with thinly sliced garlic.


Hot and sour soup.

Peking duck skin.

The duck skin wrapped in tortilla like corn flour dough.
Very similar to what we had at China Palace (click and scroll down).

Pigeon. Chine Chine's specialty.