Following on from last week’s outstanding meal at Le Du https://beirutibrit.wordpress.com/2014/06/26/le-du-silom-bangkok/ I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to visit another restaurant where the kitchen is manned by a talented up and coming young Thai chef; La Table de Tee. Chef Chantree “Tee” Kachonklin spent 6 years working at London’s Michelin starred Roussillon restaurant and whilst he may now have the pressure of running his own restaurant, his happiness at no longer having to work the 18 hour days – the standard for many fine dining restaurants in London – is evident when we chat and is something I can definitely relate to.
There are 2 main things that set Le Table de Tee apart from other restaurants, the first being Chef Tees interesting blend of Thai and classic French ingredients and techniques, the second being that they offer a weekly changing tasting menu (with a choice of two dishes for the 3rd, 4th and 5th courses) as opposed to an a la carte option, placing you well and truly in his hands for the duration of dinner.
Our first course “Prawn and Garlic” was probably my favourite in that it was the most surprising. A single ravioli was filled with prawns and garlic and served with sautéed squid, clams still in their shells, tempura of aubergine and coconut sauce. I have to admit my face dropped when I read the description for the first time as it just seemed like a lot of components for one dish but each ingredient had its part to play and were prepared to perfection, the coconut sauce was so subtly scented (not to mention incredibly good) that I could have happily drunk a whole bowl of it.
“Chicken and 5 Spice” was a bacon wrapped ballotine of chicken served atop a rich Jerusalem artichoke puree with a 5 spice infused chicken jus. The portion sizes were absolutely spot on and I loved how the earthy artichoke flavour intermingled with the 5 spice as it is a combination I have not tried before – bacon of course is good with everything!
The 3rd course gave us the opportunity to select from 2 dishes “Black Truffle Risotto” or “Snapper and Pineapple” and as we were 2 people, we decided to share both dishes between us making the choice much easier than it otherwise would have been! The risotto was cooked perfectly al dente, the parmesan making it rich and creamy and the truffle adding more delicious earthy notes. The dish was also topped with honey roasted pork belly cooked like bacon which whilst very pleasant was not really necessary in my book as the rest of the dish was just so flavourful. The snapper had been oven baked and came with sweet, juicy “navet” (baby turnips) crispy fish skin, tempura vegetables and a pineapple curry sauce. The sauce was great, I could have done with a little more if I were to be critical but that’s because I was enjoying it so much!
For the main course I chose the “Pork and Thai Dill” whilst Nianne had the “Beef and Thyme” which I didn’t try as I do not really eat beef but it was again beautifully presented – wrapped in Parma ham and served with sautéed mushrooms and a parmesan tuile, a good size for the tasting menu. My pork was excellent – I really liked that they used both the loin and then little individual pork ribs as they were juicy and tender –I also appreciated that they had trimmed the fat off as whilst I know this is where the flavour comes from, sometimes it can just be a bit much for me. The whole dish took on a great aniseedy tone from the use of not only the dill but fennel as well which cut through the richness of the accompanying gnocchi and potato cream beautifully.
Onto desserts and we again shared the 2 options between us “Coconut Chocolate Mousse” and “Vanilla Chiboust” which were a nice contrast to each other. The chocolate mousse was layered with sponge and enveloped in a rich, decadent dark chocolate glaze with a scoop of sweet macadamia ice cream to stop it from being too rich and it was with sadness we declared defeat and were unable to finish the last few mouthfuls! The vanilla chiboust on the other hand was much lighter, served inside a pastry tart base with cumin scented sticky rice, fresh fruit and almond ice cream. The cumin was a great addition with the sweetness of the fruit and cream, a really interesting and unusual combination.
To cap off what had been an excellent meal we were served a peanut macaroon with a shot glass of lychee jelly again showing Tee’s commitment to using seasonal market produce (sourced mostly from Talad Thai on the outskirts of Bangkok – one of Thailand’s largest wholesale markets) The set menu is practically a steal at 1150 THB and wines start at a reasonable 1200 THB a bottle ( I was very impressed with our extremely quaffable Italian chardonnay) meaning you are looking at a bill of just under 2000 THB a head.
La Table de Tee, 69/5 Soi Sala Daeng, Silom Rd. Bangkok, http://www.latabledetee.com/
*We were guests of La Table de Tee on this occasion but again, all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own.