BANGKOK RESTAURANT

Poonsin

This Chinese restaurant is the stuff of legend.

This Chinese restaurant is the stuff of legend, having held a reputation for some of the best roasted duck in town for more than 60 years. The long menu is clearly separated into categories: chicken, seafood, fish, crab and, of course, duck. Poonsin is generally quite packed-out and walk-in customers can have a tough time winning the attention of the harried staff, so it’s best to book ahead. 
This Chinese restaurant is the stuff of legend, having held a reputation for some of the best roasted duck in town for more than 60 years. But, apart from that speciality, there’s not much that really demands you traverse across town. We’re not exactly impressed by the slow service or inattentive staff, but it doesn’t seem to bother the hard-core fan base, mostly government officials working in the area.
 
Prices are pretty cheap, too, with plenty of proper dishes starting at B60, while the dining room is bright and inviting, thanks to a revamp a few years ago. The long menu is clearly separated into categories: chicken, seafood, fish, crab and, of course, duck. The latter comes in portions priced at B75, B130 and B300. The dish lives up to its reputation and we love that the thick slices of duck are both tender and juicy, swimming in a well-rounded stock. The crab fried rice, which took 30 minutes to arrive on our last visit, isn’t amazing, but is a decent side that’s not at all soggy.
 
Other dishes are a let-down, though, such as the stirf ried fishmaw with eggs (B100/150/200), which comes with sad, tiny pieces of maw. It’s almost flavorless, too, if not for the small side of sour soy sauce. The stir-fried shrimp with dried chili is similarly bland, tasting as if it’s been quickly fried up with little attention to seasoning. The or suan (oyster fried in egg batter, B85/130/170) is better but, served without flour, it’s not really the or suan most of us know. The old-style tangy chili sauce is delicious, though.
 
Poonsin is generally quite packed-out and walk-in customers can have a tough time winning the attention of the harried staff, so it’s best to book ahead. That said, if you’re not coming especially for the star dish, you’re better off leaving this old establishment to the food bloggers who review it over and over again.
Venue Details
Address: Poonsin, 460 Prachathipatai Rd., Bangkok, Thailand
Phone: 02-281-9229, 02-282-2728
Cuisine: Chinese, Thai
Price Range: B
Open since: March, 1955
Opening hours: daily 9am-10pm
Parking available
Report a correction