A major phenomenon in Europe and the United States, the local food movement (LFM) is perhaps the most significant current food trend of all—yes, more than six-course wine dinners and guest visits by Michelin-star chefs. A direct response to the over-industrialization of food and the damage to farmland and farmers by big business, single-crop farming, the LFM is a revival of sourcing seasonal food from nearby small farms, not from countries far, far away.
Top chefs embrace local produce.
THE PLACE: Los Cabos
1 Sukhumvit 14, 02-653-3900. BTS Asoke
THE FOOD: Robb Vaughn, former partner of Great American Rib, grew up in San Diego and emphasizes frontera-style Mexican cuisine, so while the usual fajitas, burritos and tamales are on the menu, the focus here is on seafood like baked oysters (B225) and mesquite por ribs (B325 for
Celebrate the day of Mexican cultural pride (May 5) with this roundup.
The Thai Book Fair has come and gone, and narry a page about exciting Thai food, chefs, food writers or critics—nothing but booklets of quick meals and stir-fry recipes. That’s because all the foodie joie-de-vivre is happening online, and here we round up some of the most promising Thai food blogs on the web.
Austin Bush Foodblog
Thai bloggers know good food.
More (Michelin) star-studded food news comes with the imminent arrival of Chef Dominique Corby, for 4 nights only, at V9 Wine Bar & Restaurant (Sofitel Bangkok Silom, 188 Silom Rd., 02-238-1991). Corby is big in Japan thanks to his TV shows and his two french restuarants, the one Michelin star Le 6ème Sens in Tokyo and Sakura in Osaka. Diners will be able to choose between his five-course set dinner, which includes dishes like lobster cooked in a turtle consommé, quail egg, saladana, oba leaf and sudachi lime, or pick from his a la carte menu.
Traditional Thai food purists can start salivating with the news that Michelin-star chef David Thompson is set to open his very first Bangkok restaurant this April. While the name is yet to be confirmed, we do know it’s going to be at the Metropolitan Hotel (South Sathorn Rd., 02-625-3333) and, like Thompson’s restaurant Nahm, in London, it will focus on presenting the traditional Thai dishes that have become the Aussie chef’s trademark.
This April, your water needs will be twofold: for rehydrating yourself in the heat and for splashing on innocent passersby. We round up six types of bottled water all under B10 for a blind taste test. And, for you trendy types who want to be armed while walking the streets, we also appraise how good they will look in your hand.
The best bottles to drink and drizzle this Songkran.
Despite its moniker, Vegan House (2/10 Ari Soi 1, Phaholyothin Rd., 02-271-3407, 081-668-9229. Open Mon-Sat 10am-8pm) does prepare some dishes with eggs and dairy products. There are only eight specialties on offer at any one time, but the menu changes daily to make the best of available ingredients and offer some variety to its regulars. The crowd-pleasing staples are khai palo (boiled eggs in sweet gravy) and namprik makham (tamarind chili paste). They also serve coffee and pastries.
Thanks to the arrival of Spanish on 4 (Silom Soi 4. Open daily 6pm-2am), Silom nightcrawlers can now enjoy yummy and authentic tapas along with pitchers of sangria. The newcomer is, in fact, the second branch of Tapas Café on Sukhumvit Soi 11, but to avoid confusion with the Soi 4 landmark, Tapas Bar, goes for the straight-forward name instead. There’s no phone number yet, but the bright yellow shophouse is impossible to miss.
Named after Shakespeare’s play The Merchant of Venice, two-month-old Venice Vanich (1/12 Soi Mahathat, Maharat Rd., 02-222-8082. Open daily 11am-midnight. www.venicevanich.com) can be found perched on Maharat Pier. The riverside eatery whips up various Thai dishes like tomyam omelet, hormok talay (steamed seafood curry cake served in whole coconut) and deep-fried morning glory salad. From 11am-2pm, it also offers an international lunch buffet.
A fan of US-based restaurant chain IHOP (International House of Pancakes), actor Chai Chattayodom, along with his pancake-loving friends, started Pancake Café (Nawamin City Avenue, Kasetnawamin Rd., 08-2796-4556. Open daily 11am-10pm). The month-old parlor claims to be the first place in Bangkok to specialize in pancakes. The menu is still pretty limited but you can choose between savory and sweet styles.