The buzz: Newly-opened hotel The Okura Prestige Bangkok is also home to a new branch of Yamazato, the famed traditional Japanese restaurant in Amsterdam which has held on to a Michelin star since 2002. To maintain these lofty standards here, the master chef of Yamazato Amsterdam was flown in to oversee the preparation of all the details, while the Bangkok team has been imported wholesale from Yamazato Tokyo, headed by Chef Shigeru Hagiwara.
The décor: The Yamazato here is a more luxurious contemporary dining space than the one in Amsterdam, but it still draws inspiration from classic Japanese design and the art of origami. You’ll be welcomed by both Thai and Japanese staff adorned in beautiful kimono dresses. The ceiling is quite low, but the place has got a great view of Bangkok. If you’re there for teppanyaki (grilled meats and seafood), there are two dedicated zones that are separated from the main dining area by glass partitions.
The food: The chefs are not the only things imported from Japan; pretty much everything from the fish (mainly from Tokyo’s Tsukiji Market) to the tableware is too. Lunch sets include nigiri sushi gozen (sushi and sushi rolls served with miso soup and fruits, B880), beef shougayaki gozen (chilled tofu, stir-fried vegetables and beef in ginger sauce, B830) and the scrumptious una jhu (rice box with grilled eel, B1,300). Dinner is even grander, as the spotlight shines on kaiseki (refined 6-8 course dinners, B4,500-B6,000), available as sushi kaiseki and wagyu toubanyaki kaiseki, among others. For something a little less elitist, there’s also an a la carte menu with sushi sets (B2,800), grilled salmon (B560) and gindara saikyouyaki (grilled black cod with white miso, B720).
The drinks: Besides the green tea, which is the real deal, you can order from 25 selections of sake (B420-B15,000) and 13 selections of shoju (B320-B620), while wines (both Old and New World) range from B600-B20,000.
The crowd: Powerful people from the nearby embassies dining in the private rooms and celebs make for a generally hi-so crowd. Pieng-or Mongkolkumnuankhet