BANGKOK RESTAURANT

The Local

Authentic local dishes and regional products are the focus in this hundred-year-old house.

4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Despite its striking setting—a 100-year-old house that pays homage to Thailand’s rich heritage with a faux-museum of antiques and old photos— The Local’s menu still manages to take the spotlight. Focusing on hard-to-find Thai court recipes and regional products, authentic Thai flavors burst from century-old recipes like beef in spicy herbal soup and Thai mackerel in coconut milk, all served in a warm and bright dining area.

The Local was opened by the second-generation owner of Thai eatery Naj, who has transformed a hundred-year-old house in the middle of business hub Asoke into a fine dining establishment serving Thai cuisine. The front of the house is not unlike a faux-museum: painted in the color of mohom (the traditional blue of Northern farmer’s shirts) and decorated in the style of the King Rama V-era, it’s fitted out with antiques as well as old photos. But once you reach the main dining area, you find yourself in a warm and bright contemporary Thai space. Much of the hype surrounding the restaurant, though, comes from its menu, which promises authentic Thai flavors derived from century-old recipes lifted from the royal Thai court. But on our last visit, the place was mostly packed with foreigners, which gives some indication as to whom the tastes are really tailored for. While they claim to do authentic Thai food through hard-to-find recipes, their Southern offerings, in particularly, fall rather short of being the real deal. The gaeng tai pla (Southern-style fish curry, B250) is much paler and less herby than it’s supposed to be. It’s a similar story with the gang kua pla bai som pan kee maa (spicy yellow curry with fish and Southern leaf, B280) and kua gling moo (stir fried pork with spicy herbs, B220), which are both lacking in aroma and spice—the very soul of the dishes. That’s not to say they taste bad—both are reasonably well-balanced—they just aren’t particularly potent. On the other hand, the khao soi (noodles in Northern-style curry), served as part of the Appetizers Set (B250), is brilliant thanks to its thick and flavorful curry. Another pleasant surprise, the platu sordsai with sang-wa (deep-fried mackerel stuffed with minced pork in a mango salad, B350) is very refreshing, with its sweet-and-sour combination of chopped mango and lime going well with the salty mackerel. We just wish they’d be more careful with certain details. The homemade ice-cream with Thai dessert (B180), for example, is deliciously creamy, with the mango variety especially aromatic, but the accompanying sticky rice is just too dense and tastes a little overcooked. While The Local isn’t quite the place to find truly authentic Thai food, they still deliver mostly enjoyable dishes—some of which are indeed hard to find—amid a great atmosphere. Corkage B500 (liquors), B400 (wines).

Venue Details
Address: The Local, 32-32/1 Sukhumvit Soi 23, Bangkok, 10110 Thailand
Phone: 02-664-0664
Website: www.thelocalthaicuisine.com
Area: Nana Asoke
Cuisine: Thai
Price Range: BB - BBBB
Open since: February, 2012
Opening hours: daily 11:30am-2:30pm, 5:30-10:30pm
Nearest trainMRT Sukhumvit
Parking available, Takeaway available
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The Local