Smith gets its name for its focus on craft, as in “blacksmith,” which in the food world, translates to that whole nose-to-tail trend about eating calf tongue and pig’s trotters. Throw in an industrial chic décor (corrugated steel façade, a scattering of old tools and unadorned loft-style ceilings), the uber-cool Hyde & Seek team (Chef Peter Pitakwong, star chef Ian Kittichai and Flow mixologist Chanond Purananda), and you’ve got an achingly, almost annoyingly, fashionable venue—they don’t even have a sign outside! The hype, compounded with some growing pains, which saw the usual kitchen and service hiccups in the early days, managed to alienate a few people. We feel they’re missing out, though. Smith’s service is now smiling, fast and attentive. And the food, much of it geared towards carnivores, is pure Kittichai: familiar dishes we love with subtle, fun, details to refresh and reinvigorate them. The beef tartar (B250) comes with a soft-boiled egg, crunchy tempura-like capers and garden flowers. The crispy toast and apple notes (cider vinegar, fresh apple) of the head cheese (B280) terrine are a delight. The simple hanger steak (B790) is bursting with flavor, accompanied by lovely mini-veggies, and came cooked just the way we ordered it: rare. On occasion, it doesn’t all come together quite so perfectly, such as the sausage pie (B310), where the promised harissa is undetectable and the honey-glazed veggies have added their glaze to the sauce, excessively sweetening the whole dish. Also, portion sizes can be a tad uneven, a similar grumble to Kittichai’s Issaya, but overall it feels just about right if you want a three-course meal—and given how good the desserts (B180-220) are, we do recommend you go whole hog. Note that there are also craft beers from Beervana (from B280), the aforementioned cocktail talent (from B280) and a solid wine list with most options in the B1,400-1,700 range. The only downside to comfort food is that it’s a tad safe, even with the creative flourishes. (Maybe the chef’s table, upstairs, is a bit bolder, but we haven’t tried it.) But what Smith does, it does very well, in a handsome (if slightly trendy) décor, with a good crew of servers and a crowd of beautiful people. Corkage B500 (wines); B1,000 (liquors).
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