Celeb chef Chumpol unveils a new Thai dessert-focused cafe.
The buzz: Foodies already know celebrity chef Chumpol Jangprai from his Thai fine-dining operation R.Haan—winning two Michelin stars for four years in a row—and recently from his involvement in Sukhumvit’s Lanna fine-dining at North. But at his new cafe in Thonglor, Waanthai, the illustrious chef takes on a new passion: Thai desserts.
The vibe: Opened right next to R.Haan, Waanthai is more casual in design, similar to photogenic cafes with plenty of natural light and inviting pastel palettes of light green and blue. Traditional Thai motifs like lai kanok are blended into the interior.
The food: Sourcing regional ingredients across the country, chef Chumpol to serve authentic tastes from the yesteryear and elevate traditional Thai desserts through cutting-edge techniques and contemporary—and photogenic—presentation. Thai Mon Thong durian cheese cake (B180) is an answered prayer for durian devotees and a curse to those who despise it. Here, Chumpol uses whole flesh from durian and blends it to deliver the wonderfully creamy, custardy taste which doesn’t sacrifice any of its unique odors. Taro Custard Mille-Feuille (B180) is a sly improvement on the classic mor gaeng, made of egg custard featuring multiple layers of chewiness. The Tubtim Siam Waan Thai (B180), meanwhile, sees the delicate water chestnut ruby swimming in mildly fragrant coconut syrup. Head there during the afternoon for the high tea set (B1,212 for two), complete with both savory and sweet bites, from pink flower-shaped dumplings and caviar kanom krok to grilled chicken with tea leaf tip and chocolate Chiang Mai bonbons filled with Thai tea. The cafe can dub as a casual dining spot where you can try Chumpol’s signature dishes like coconut-smoked pork sausage served with ground fish, roasted rice, and coconut milk (B350) or Thai rice noodle with sweet coconut curry (B450)
Why we’d come back: Though it’s not that unusual to see fine-dining chefs dropping their robes and formality to cater to the taste for the masses, chef Chumpol bridges the gap quite wonderfully. His uncompromising authenticity of flavor and added benefits of being photogenic, makes this place a worthy stop in Thonglor. By Porpor Leelasestaporn.
|Waanthai, 131 Thonglor Soi 9,, Bangkok, Thailand
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