I had friends visiting from the UK last month and got to meet their amazing daughter (who was born less than a week after my last trip back to the UK) for the first time. It’s safe to say that navigating Bangkok with an almost 2 year old is not something I am used to and even getting on the BTS proved problematic as it meant lifting a buggy up and down several flights of stairs in temperatures in the mid 30’s – hard work indeed. But of course spending time with friends and a ridiculously gorgeous toddler makes it all worthwhile and we had a wonderful couple of days chilling by the pool and eating everywhere from Bo.lan (who could not have looked after us or Mia our toddler any better) to El Osito.
On their last day we decided to head out for a late lunch and settled on Soi 11 as it was relatively nearby and sadly Soi Polo https://beirutibrit.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/an-issan-feast-at-soi-polo-chicken-off-wireless-road-bangkok/ was off the table as there were protests that day down on Wireless road. After a terrible start at Suk 11 restaurant (we asked for the bill and left before we even received our drinks) we ended up at Chilli Culture Thai kitchen just across from Marshmallow bar at the far end of the Soi.
We decided to share a few appetizers and main courses between us (we definitely over ordered!) and set about choosing what to order. To start, we shared “Thung Tong” or “Golden bags” – little pastry parcels filled with minced shrimps, herbs and vermicelli noodles and then fried until crisp as well as some beautiful Thai fish cakes with whole chillis inside and a selection of satay. The satay in particular were delicious, especially the shrimp ones and any fears I had harbored that the restaurant looked a bit “touristy” to serve good Thai food were happily banished.
For our mains we had Pad Thai in an egg wrapping, some water spinach in a spicy garlic sauce and a lightly spiced Penang chicken curry . If I were to be critical I would say the Pad Thai was a little too heavy on the sauce but that didn’t stop us from polishing it off pretty quickly and my friend continued to pick at the water spinach long after the rest of us had conceded defeat.
I loved how accommodating the staff were, they managed to serve a kids portion of chicken fried rice before we had even decided what we wanted and the waitress came to discretely check with mum that Mia was allowed ice cream whilst we were still enjoying our meals meaning that our toddler was completely entertained throughout lunch, no easy task!
One very strong selling point of Chilli Culture is that it is open all the way through the afternoon whereas many local more local restaurants tend to stick to lunch and dinner hours. It was definitely a pleasant surprise to me that the meal was as good as it was and Chilli Culture would be a good place to take picky eaters who want to try Thai food or simply grab a meal at before heading to one of the nearby rooftop bars when you have guests from out of town visiting.