With its phonebook-thick menu and chalkboards scrawled with notes on viniculture, aging processes and pairing tips, this rusticated wine bistro is as much about getting educated as it is about getting sozzled. Working only with organic, biodynamic and sustainable producers means rare tastes abound, as in the selection of “orange” wine, an ancient tradition that’s having a resurgence. There’s also plenty to eat with a cold-cuts counter and raw bar alongside tapas plates and more substantial dishes like spaghetti clams with garlic white wine pepper and parsley, or smoked organic Korat chicken served with chorizo crust and bacon potato terrine.
Greek restaurant Aesop’s conjures an ouzo-fueled party atmosphere. This next-gen rebirth of a family-run restaurant from Sydney serves hearty Greek classics like eight-hour lamb shoulder, chicken souvlaki and moussaka (think beef lasagna with eggplant in place of pasta sheets) in a hall made for big, boisterous gatherings. After dinner, the place transforms into a dance floor where guests are encouraged to hurl crockery, as is Greek tradition, to a soundtrack of “Zorba’s Dance.”
Crumbling walls, rickety old bicycles, rusting plant pots and bouquets of dried flowers setn the intensely rustic mood for Harvest’s homey European menu. Though heavy on the seafood, you’ll find hearty, meaty dishes as well, with highlights including the succulent Iberico pork steak on sweet braised fennel and 1.2kg cote de boeuf. No visit is complete without ordering the mussels in white wine and capers sauce.
With its cozy garden and sun-dappled dining room, Sukhumvit’s organic-sourcing trailblazer is the kind of place that makes you stick around from brunch until late. Rest assured you’re in fine company. Spotlighting the very best of produce (vegetables from organic farms in Hua Hin and Laos, wild-caught seafood), the hearty and homey Mediterranean-inspired fare is made for sharing, ideally over wine from the painstakingly put together list of smaller, organic European labels.
This restaurant manages to combine two restaurant concepts in one. By day, Osito plays the mild-mannered Clark Kent type with its deli sandwiches and salads, while come nighttime it turns on the super powers with its Spanish-influenced menu of tapas and paella, in homage to Californian chef/owner Billy Bautista’s heritage. The seafood paella and dry-aged tomahawk steak are highly recommended.
Though Toro plays to Barcelona with its offerings of boquerones (anchovies in black vinegar) and boards of manchego cheese, this Boston-born restaurant is far from strictly Spanish. Head chef Zach Watkins takes his cues from the American branch for many of the fusion small plates, while also interpreting Thai flavors into dishes like hangar steak in green curry sauce and fatty pig’s cheek with dancing shrimp and pickled mango. Follow things up with a huge pan of paella to share.
There’s only one thing that remains the same at this North-Africa-meets-Mediterranean restaurant as when it traded as Vesper: Sicilian-born head chef Francesco Deiana. Now though he plays with flavors drawn from North Africa, Spain and Southern Italy—carrots roasted in cumin and harrisa, lamb shoulder tajine, balls of sumac-spiced crabmeat. The dining room’s explosion of turquoise, orange and vibrant tiles ensures a fun time.
From September 14-29, BK Magazine and 60 of the city’s best restaurants will join forces to serve hundreds of special dinners at a knockout fixed price of B1,000++ per person (B1,170 total) for a minimum of three courses. General booking opens this Aug 20, though if you use a Citibank credit card you can start making bookings from Aug 11 and also get special dining perks at each venue. Make your reservations at www.bkrestaurantweek.com.
SPECIAL BENEFITS FOR CITIBANK CARD MEMBERS
Advance booking for Citi credit card members from Aug 11
Extra dish or other perk when you pay with Citi credit cards
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