Nang Kwak, Bangkok, Thailand
Nearest Train:BTS Thong Lo
Opening Hours:daily 11am-2pm, 6pm-midnight
Third Place, Thonglor Soi 10, 02-714-7938.
Nang Kwak suffers from split personality—no, not the Thai goddess, but, the hip restaurant opened by a celeb couple on Thonglor. For one, the place is split between a cafe on the ground floor and a rooftop terrace on the third. More importantly, the restaurant’s approach and prices scream hiso, while the dishes are distinctly pedestrian. To be fair, the rooftop really is charming. While many places try to recreate a garden atmosphere with a couple of potted plants, Nang Kwak truly succeeds in both going green and, surprisingly, offering a sweeping panorama of Thonglor. As you arrive, a smartly dressed army of waiters break out their best wais and provide attentive service throughout—just don’t ask them about the menu. Speaking of which, the boring Western food served here is where things really get ugly. The pork chop with “peppercorn puree” and pineapple is B320 for a hearty slice of tough pig, a pile of processed mashed potatoes, fibrous pineapple and excessively salty mushroom sauce. Just like the rest of the dishes, it’s a generous portion, edible, but only just. Take the risotto, either they use terrible rice, or don’t know that risotto rice is not cooked like Thai rice, or both. Get the one with ham and peas and you’ve got a perfect dish for a six year old. For pastas, don’t count on al dente. Do count on canned tomato puree, such as in the spicy spaghetti with Italian sausage and bacon. The pork bits were nice and overall the dish would be great if your roommate cooked it up and you both had a bad hangover. The fact that it’s served in a “posh” (yes, that’s how most people describe Nang Kwak) restaurant is the problem. Appetizers are similar: light on flavor, no freshness and plenty of salt. As for desserts, you can opt for overpriced ones from the main menu (chocolate cake) or the more reasonable cheesecakes from the cafe downstairs, which, despite the word “Patisserie” on their menu, taste more S&P than Lenôtre. Corkage B400.