Wild & Co.
Rama 4's meat-heavy restaurant is a fun, if not totally fulfilling, adventure.
Amid a lush garden sit two glasshouses, one dedicated to a bar and the other a dining space where head chef Chatphon Thavornvanit focuses on hefty meat dishes, especially game. His rabbit comes bacon-wrapped with kidney, liver and greens dressed with rabbit jus, and sits alongside venison tenderloin, as well as smoked meat which he prepares in a big smoker you can see from the dining room.
Wild & Co is not your everyday restaurant. This house on Rama 4 Road teeming with taxidermy and plantlife serves hefty meat dishes, with a particular fondness for game. Unfortunately, it’s kind of too cool to be true.
But first, the fun part: visiting this leafy enclave (barely recognizable as once being grungy hipster hangout Stu-fe) is an adventure. Step inside the imposing gate and you’re greeted by the smell of smoked meat. A bevy of waitstaff lead you to a glasshouse dining room via an outdoor screening of animals devouring other animals and a neon sign that marks Black Cabin, a clandestine music bar.
It’s just a shame that, on our last visit, the food’s execution fell far short of satisfying. Vegetarians, forget about it. Beyond ribeye, tomahawk and beef ribs, the menu charts duck, rabbit, pigeon, venison, quail and crocodile, much of it locally sourced. The chili beef fries (B250)—brittle ground beef, gluggy cheddar and waxy skin-on wedges, served on a room-temp skillet—portend lacklustre things to come. A seared quail salad (B390) has a nice mulberry, basil and balsamic tang, but turns into an unrewarding game of spot the bone, with barely the sum of one bird scattered amid the leaves. But you wouldn’t measure a place like Wild & Co by its salad, right?
Too bad, then, that the big-hitting meat dishes disappoint. The recommended rabbit roll (B740), again served on a superfluous skillet, features tough and dry rabbit meat that tastes only of the bacon it’s wrapped in, but it’s the mix of oddly al dente green peas and all-but-raw carrot and potato swimming in a cheese-gravy mush that we’re more offended by—we’d expect more from a TV dinner. Safer is the grilled Thai venison tenderloin (B690): lean and moist (we ordered medium-rare) with a subtle herb rub, it suggests Wild & Co would fare better as a straight steakhouse, though they’d want to improve on the tepid plating. The less said about the bed of grilled lettuce, job’s tears and kidney beans—a minefield of green peppercorns—the better.
Food’s a miss, but trekking to this no-man’s land does guarantee big bold cocktails (the Jameson-led Wild Men [B320] will put hairs on your chest) and warm service that’ll gently nudge you in the direction of the live blues band. So, Wild & Co: cool space, stiff drinks, nice people, good music. Let’s leave it at that.
This review took place in March 2018 and is based on a visit to the restaurant without the restaurant's knowledge. For more on BK's review policy, click here.
|Address:||Wild & Co., 31/3 Soi Farm Wattana, Rama 4 Rd., Bangkok, Thailand|
|Area:||Klong Toei - Upper Rama 4|
|Price Range:||BBB - BBBB|
|Open since:||November, 2016|
|Opening hours:||Tue-Sun 5:30pm-midnight|
|Live music, Parking available|
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