Hidden in an unassuming complex near Rama 9 Hospital, it's easy to dismiss Anotai from the outside, but step inside and you'll find that this vegetarian restaurant does all it needs to, and more. Named after its Cordon-Bleu-educated owner, Anotai is an attempt to be a "facility": restaurant, café and yoga studio--all in one. It also hosts a flower arrangement class regularly. The décor reflects its multiple personalities: a handful of dark wood tables and chairs with ruby cushions, pale yellow walls and dim yellow lighting, a café-like cake display and a Chinese arch that leads to a wooden staircase lined with jars of herbs and spieces. The atmosphere is calm and quiet as the servers often outnumber the clientele, which consist mostly of ladies-who-lunch and their daughters-who-diet. The menu lists several Thai dishes, along with organic salads, pastas and herbal juices. All the "meats" are actually TVP, or texturized vegetable protein. However, cast aside any per-conceived notions you might have about bland and boring veggie fare. Despite the dietary restrictions, organic vegetarian dishes served up at Anotai come with simple-yet-tasteful presentations and are packed with flavor. Our one and only gripe would be the spaghetti with olive oil, chili and TVP "salted fish". The dish came with textbook al dente pasta, but more seasoning would pep up its profile. Apart from that, everything from the crisp tofu to tender brown rice is well-executed. For salads, there are four dressings to choose from: balsamic, low-cholesterol caesar, miso and our favorite, mustard honey. But don't stick to just veggies. The real crowd-pleaser at this intimate eatery is tofu; larb tao huu is a pleasant combination of minced tofu, mint leaves, a whiff of roasted rice powder and zesty dressing, while dep-fried Japanese tofu is absolutely addictive thanks to crisp-on-the-outside-soft-on-the-inside tofu cubes that contrast nicely with tangy lemongrass dressing. After the healthy meal, reward yourself with Anotai's wide range of homemade desserts. Banana cupcakes served warm with vanilla ice cream and molten chocolate cake with sherry sauce live up ot the chef's accolades and are worth every calorie-laden bite. This is a good spot to enjoy a meal that both your personal trainer and flesh-eating friends would approve of. We heartily recommend you brave the dark lanes to find this meatless retreat.
|Address:||Anotai, 976/17 Soi Rama 9, Rim Klong Sam Sen Rd., Bangkok, Thailand|
|Cuisine:||Vegetarian or Organic|
|Opening hours:||Thu-Sun 10am-9:30pm; Mon 10am-9:30pm; Tue 10am-9:30pm|
|Nearest train||MRT Phra Ram 9|
|Reservation recommended, Parking available|
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