Mer Made Cantina
Tinned fish is good. Tinned fish is life.
The buzz: Tinned food in Thailand is usually dismissed as cheap and uncreative. But if you look at food trends, tinned food has been garnering more attention globally, and there are several gourmet-level tinned foods with a rich history. Hopping on this trend is Mer Made Cantina, a newly opened tapas spot with only four tables in Ladprao that aims to showcase gourmet tinned fish and locally sourced seafood delicacies.
The decor: There’s a bucolic charm lingering in the air of this tapas place, with heaps of straws, open-air space, and chickens the owners keep as pets; we thought they sold the chickens and asked them to their face and were embarrassed. But the space is set to evolve. There will be more venues to come, namely a pizzeria, sustainable-focused cafe, and boozy ice cream stall.
The food: It’s a combination of bite-sized small plates and well-portioned delicacies. The owner sources quality-tinned fish from Europe, namely Portugal, while maintaining close contacts with local suppliers in the South. The heirloom tomatoes and Moroccan sardines (B280), for instance, boast zesty sardines served with vibrantly colored heirloom tomatoes. The shrimp cocktails (B280) sit within the beds of mashed avocado with pronounced traces of wasabi, whereas the saltwater shrimps (B380) sourced from Phuket radiate freshness with a chimichurri sauce. The highlight, however, is the Mer Made pizza with Moroccan sardines and tomato sauce (B340); the sweet acidity of the tomatoes make a delicious contrast to the salty sardines. Wash them down with their natural red wine sangria sorbet (B240).
The drinks: Mermaid Cantina also boasts a vast array of natural wines, starting at B390 by the glass and B1,600 bottles, including Ultra Violet de David, by Les Vins Pirouettes, a natural red from Alsace, France.
Why we’d come back: Ladprao is usually overshadowed by Ari’s hip, chic energy and usually associated with more residential vibes. But with Mer Made Cantina, as well as their hopeful additions to the space, the area could become another hip and happening community. By Porpor Leelasestaporn