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Lifestyle Curators for Thailand + Southeast Asia

7 MUST-VISIT HOTSPOTS

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More new restaurants and bars opened recently and you should include them in your next foodie crawl program

IMG_1277#1 Sühring (Yen Akat 3, 02 287 1799), located in a 1970s villa at a posh neighborhood far enough but also close enough from the CBD of Sathorn, is where the Sühring brothers invite you to experience, for the first time in Asia, some of the best examples of the so-called “new-German cuisine.”

The brothers were former chefs of Mezzaluna, where their years of experience from Europe became a signature for the restaurant for eight solid years, before opening their own restaurant. The twin, it seems, wanted to prove to the world that German food isn’t just beer, sausages, and Oktoberfest. We are curious of course, but not for long.

At Sühring, the brothers bring to the table modern techniques in serving and preparing German cuisine, although one will not miss the familiar horseradish, sauerkraut, Spätzle, and Frankfurter grune soβe.

Popular traditional German dishes are commonly served in generous portions, and for us, the twin chefs created something that is both sizable and fulfilling indeed: a 9-course and 12-course menu, which might sound excessive but worked brilliantly for us.

The two menus allowed us not only to enjoy the variety of tastes and flavors but also to explore several German dishes all at once. Bite-sized courses were paired with an amazing selection of German wines that effortlessly brought out the taste of each dish to the brim.

Expect a mouthwatering experience that will make you wish to return for more of the Sühring’s brothers cooking. And not to worry: for revisits, the chefs can whip up new things upon requests to keep up the beat. – Rich Kantita

restauraurant_151225_0003_hires#2 Sushi Masato (3/22 Soi Sawasdee 1, Sukhumvit 31, 02 040 0015), the current “talk of the town,” is a hidden gem of a traditional sushi bar in the City of Angels. Chef Masato Shimizu, one of the youngest Michelin star chefs in New York City, was the man behind the restaurant, and he has blessed the city with the finest of culinary experiences.

Taste the freshness of seasonal fish and shellfish that are shipped from Tsukiji market every week, and the real Japanese shari rice that only the skillful can perfectly cook. The menu is filled with about 20 dishes selected by the chef himself, which can be enjoyed at the price of only THB 4,000, exclusive of drinks.

You think that the price is a little bit prohibitive, but apparently many aficionados do not think so. In fact, reservations have been booked until August, so gear up quick and make a reservation now if you want to try the divine tasting of Japanese sushi in Bangkok city as soon as possible! – Rich Kantita

Grilled meat in charcoal Oven 1#3 Islero (Ground floor, Athenee Tower behind Plaza Athenee Bangkok, Wireless Road; Tel: 02 168 8100) Spanish cuisine is coming of age in Bangkok – finally — as more and more Spanish restaurants join in the city’s uber-exciting restaurant fray. The youngest kid on the block is Islero, which had its sights set on bringing bold, authentic Castillan flavors through beautifully presented Michelin inspired dishes.

Named after a famous fighting bull that defeated a matador in 1947, Islero offers a menu that not only honors classic Spanish dishes but also pushes their boundaries by embracing modern techniques and presentation. Head Chef Pedro Luis Rodriguez Serrano and famed chef Eduard Bosch, who both have extensive experience in Michelin-starred restaurants, co-created the menu.

A rustic yet refined interior, with the piece de resistance being the central installation/partition featuring food trays in different wooden hues complements sophisticated fare that had foodies saying “wow.”

Make sure you do not miss highlights such as rostit catala cannelloni, a truly appetizing starter, and the grilled octopus tentacles, which are served with beans and traditional Castilian stew.

For the main course, try the lobster rice and the equally sensational suckling pig-Segovia style. There is much, much more to enjoy, of course, but as they say: the proof of the pudding is in the eating, so drop by as soon as you can.  The restaurant also features a tapas bar called Cava by Islero, which is perfect for unwinding after work. – Percy Roxas

Tandoori Jheenga (กุ้งกุลาดำย่างเสิร์ฟกับชัทนีย์ใบสะระแหน่และผักชี)#4 Punjab Grill (Radisson Suites Bangkok Sukhumvit, Sukhumvit Soi 13, 02 645 4952) Known as the “crown jewel of North Indian Frontier gourmet cuisine,” Punjab Grill makes a bold statement from the moment you step into the big wooden carved castle-like gate entrance to settling down your table — ours right by the glass kitchen where we enjoyed how the meal was made right in front of our very eyes.

This is their second branch in the region, after a recent opening in Singapore that became tremendously popular, and one that we are extremely thankful for. Executive chef Bharath S. Bhat took us to an exquisite culinary journey indeed through his amazing techniques and refined servings.

The house signatures include “Avocado Papdi Chaat,” which is avocado with spicy chutneys and marinated cherry tomatoes served in flour roll cones, “Tawa Scallops,” which is pan-seared king scallop; and “Tandoori Jheenga,” which is tiger prawn char-grilled in a tandoori oven, among the many interesting dishes on the menu.

The rich, distinctive, and flavorful taste of Indian food is well-known to most of us in Bangkok, but Punjab Grill apparently has more under their sleeves, including traditional cocktails and mocktails that we can only describe as full of spice and everything nice, and desserts that are both playful and delicious such as the heavenly “chocolate sphere served in flames.” – Rich Kantiita

Riedel_006#5 Riedel Wine Bar & Cellar (Gaysorn Shopping Plaza, BTS: Chidlom; email: info@next-hospitality.com) takes the Bangkok wine bar sector to an exciting new level, as can be expected from the NEXT Hospitality Group, which conceptualized the place along with Riedel.

Said to be the first not only in Bangkok but also in the world, Riedel Wine Bar and Cellar features 40 wines by the glass (from Wine Emotion System of wine preservation) and 200 by the bottle, so there’s much to choose from. Customers can enjoy new and different selections every time they visit.

A number of wines are artisanal; the rest are well-known labels; and all are served on a recently launched Riedel Veritas range of glassware. Riedel glassware is unsurpassed in thinness and lightness, and ensures that you drink the correct wine in the correct glass – just FYI.

The decor is classic yet modern, with a dark wood finish that lends a rustic touch to the spacious setting. Floor-to-ceiling windows provide natural lighting and view of the busy city streets outside. The menu features modern interpretations of classic dishes and a unique selection of charcuterie and cheeses.  And the atmosphere will make you want to linger longer: the wine bar is open 11:30 a.m. till midnight. -– Percy Roxas

IMG_2816#6 About Eatery (Sukhumvit 21 Soi 3, Ocean Tower II, 02 665 2772) is the first natural wine bar in the country and offers selections of tapas, soup, pasta, bruschetta, and salad. Of course, the list of wine is extensive, and in addition, there’s one that might interest wine lovers: Orange Wine, known as the new shade of wine, and carries characteristics both white wine and red wine.

Orange wine is produced from white grapes that are macerated with their skin, which blends in the method of making red wine by using black grapes macerated with their skin and white wine that uses white grape but macerated without their skin. There are more eateries to discover at different corners with craft beer, charcuterie and cheese, raw bar and a deli. — Rich Kantita

resized_Fettuccine Porcini#7 Volti Ristorante & Bar (Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok; Tel: 02 236 7777, ext. 6861-6862; www.shangri-la.com/bangkok) features authentic Italian cuisine and live music in the concept of “at-home” luxury. Located at the lobby level of the hotel’s Shangri-La Wing, the place is obviously designed for maximum comfort, functionality, and aesthetic appeal.

The main feature is fine Italian cuisine, authentic modern as well as timeless dishes, best enjoyed with the backdrop of Chao Phraya River views, not to mention great live music.

The entrance has a warm inviting design that brings to mind urban Italian-style homes with beautiful plants decorating a brick wall and well-lit floor lamps. The vitality of the modern décor is enhanced by the dominant off-white theme and the nine-stepped walks that lead to the bar on the upper level where the main dining area is located enhance the feeling of vibrancy.

It is in this main dining area where Chef Luca and his team create the hearty modern Italian dishes — not only visually pleasing but also flavorful and palatable – that include seafood, chicken, veal and vegetarian entrees, as well as pasta and pizza. The cellar, also in this level, is home to more than 150 world-class wines from around the world that can also be enjoyed in an adjacent outdoor terrace chilling out area accessible through the lower level dining level. – Percy Roxas