Old Fashioned Chinese Food at IATA (Bangkok)

Once in a while you feel like having traditional Chinese foods, you know the ones you grew up with when it’s a special occasion. Peking Duck, Chinese Jujube pancakes, Shanghai Noodles etc.  I had this craving for Peking Duck and last sunday i asked if everyone in the family would be willing to go for a nice lunch.  Luckily they agreed and so we set off, no traffic and we reached in ample time.  Now a history lesson, this restaurant has been open for ever since i’m a little girl maybe before, the doorman used to be in his early 20’s now he’s got grey hair so go figure!  They have limited menu but the ingredients are top notch and so is the pricing!  Here’s what we had…

Egg noodles with Shrimp
Egg noodles with Shrimp

Must say, the noodles were cooked great!  Sometimes the egg noodles (bamee) comes over done and mushy.  It was very yummy with the juicy spicy shrimp.

Shanghai Noodles
Shanghai Noodles

I admit, you must think what is that weird green goo on top?  The best explanation is like a salsa verde, but the Chinese use a pickled mustard green i think.  There will be transparent rolled up noodle sheets and at some places are flat (imagine rolled up paper) chewy, topped with sliced pork.  Now this shows the talent of the old chefs here, the sliced pork was moist and juicy.  Right???  I  mean it’s very hard to even get it right at a shabu shabu and they didn’t even use belly pork, it was all loin and very yummy.  The green goo on top was spicy, savory and sourish.  A pickled yummy goodness.  Hard to find nowadays.

Hoisin Sauce & Spring Onions & Cucumber
Hoisin Sauce & Spring Onions & Cucumber
Piping Hot Chinese Roti/Tortilla
Piping Hot Chinese Roti/Tortilla

 Now for the highlight of the lunch, Peking Duck.  Crispy, yummy paperthin slices of roasted duck skin on our roti, with chillies, spring onion, crunchy cucumber and sweet hoisin sauce.  Roll it up and eat eat eat.  A duck is too small!!!!  Usually when you order Pekin duck they will ask whether you will use the remaining duck as a soup or fried with black pepper and garlic.  We chose the latter.  Usually we wrap it up and keep to eat the next morning with plain congee. It works amazingly well that way.  Salty and plain hot congee. YUM!

Moreish!
Moreish!
Very yummy!
Very yummy!

We also ordered a 4 Chinese Veggie dish.  It’s not all veggies, it comes with a sauteed Chinese savoy cabbage, mustard green, mushrooms and Chinese moss seaweed in a light pale gravy.  The different textures work well together, it’s good topped over hot rice.

This was more than enough for 4 people, it was delicious and comforting.  A blast to the past really.  The Chinese jujube pancakes were nice, hot, crispy, savory and sweet at the same time.  Many shops are not able to get the ratio of filling to the crunchy flour right, think quesadilla, 2 thin flour pancakes and a sweet filling crunchy crispy soft oozy filling.  Very good.

Chinese Hot Pot, Cheap and Cheerful… Ruen Petch Bangkok

Diamond House!
Diamond House!
Bubbling pots!
Bubbling pots!

First, you tick off what you want from their menu, and then they serve it to your table with a hot pot bubbling in the centre.  They actually offer other ala carte items which are actually equally yummy, but we didn’t order any..

It's in english!
It’s in english!

Having a sunday family feast, us being well, Chinese, we like to have something ferociously boiling, even during the hot weather… HOTPOT!  Now, there are so many varieties of hotpot around, but this one is a traditional family favorite, it’s a simple hotpot but their meats come adorned with some sort of a marinade which is maybe fermented bean paste and an egg.  I really don’t know what they put in it since i’ve tired to replicate it so here it is.

You get a choice of their fermented pink tofu and bean sauce which is indescribable but so delish.  You flavour it with more garlic, lime and chilies to your liking or you can opt for a soy sauce.

Add at your own risk!
Add at your own risk!

It’s hearty, salty, flavourful, (due to the copious amounts of msg no doubt) even i get a rash afterwards it’s well worth it.  Not much to say but all chinese after we’re done with the meat and veggies and all that’s left is a soup pot full of boiling stock and marinade, we would pop in bowlfuls of rice to make like an instant congee and either keep with for breakfast or eat it off… Cheers!

See the bright yolk on the marinade? BEEEFFFF
See the bright yolk on the marinade? BEEEFFFF

 

Happy Family Lunch!

 

Seafood Galore!
Seafood Galore!
Veggies...
Veggies…

 

Happy Family Lunch!
Happy Family Lunch!


Homey French Birthday Dinner at JP French Restaurant (Bangkok)

Specialties of the Day!
Specialties of the Day!

Reservations at Gaggans proved to be a difficult task since they were completely full, maybe due to the fact they ranked 3rd place in the Top 50 resetaurants of Asia.  Which to my prior experience there, Chef Gaggan Anand deserves every accolade there is, but without any regret I had the chance to suggest a French Bistro in its stead.  JP French was talked about by many groups of people being homey comfort food at acceptable pricing.  I felt it came along the lines of Chez Pape (one of my favorites located in Soi 11) simple ingredients cooked well.  Ok this is what we ate;

  1. Complimentary Amuse Bouche, one with parma ham and one with a pate.  I liked both, the pate was very dense and intense flavoured but not over powering.  Good Job!

    Duo of Amuse Bouche
    Duo of Amuse Bouche
  2. Lobster Bisque – A bit flat but tastes were fine, i preferred a creamier or a heavier bisque.  Mushroom soup is as is, mushroom.  Cream and a intense intense mushroom taste, very earthy and a great comfort food.

    Not a bad bisque
    Not a bad bisque
  3. Frogs Legs – Dad ordered it, too adventurous for me actually but they said it was just like in France.

    Looked really yummy and well presented.  Smelt lovely btw....
    Looked really yummy and well presented. Smelt lovely btw….
  4. Escargots – Over baked, it came out dried and chewy.  Sad, i usually have a thing for snails.  The buttery herby topping was under seasoned and the poor snail was well not good. A sad miss.

    Wish it was better...
    Wish it was better…
  5. The JP Chef Salad comes packed with a poached egg, slices of smoked duck breast, parma ham, duck confit and some foi gras pate on toast and of course the salad.  Personally I’m not a fan of the salad dressing, it was a clear but doesn’t really taste French to me (my preference is towards a more mustardy taste), ill admit however with hot baguettes you can turn this into a heavy lunch or a light dinner.

    Well packed with many great ingredients.  Foi Gras... Yum!
    Well packed with many great ingredients. Foi Gras… Yum!
  6. Hot Goats cheese Salad – Same salad but topped with generous goats cheese, again the goats cheese wasn’t as expected, it turned out dry.  Usually it should have been a crispy topping and a melty oozy character, this was dry and brittle.
    A sad miss...
    A sad miss…

    As seen there were a few hits and misses but so far I would rate this dinner going at a strong 6, and a 10 for service and hospitality now on to the main courses:

    1. Duck Confit – Crispy, meaty, moist.  Definite 10 10 10 10 10

      Delish!
      Delish!
    2. Steak Tartar – A hit more mustard, tabasco, salt and less gerkins this dish was also a star.  The meat was of great flavor nd quality you could taste the meat.  It has a presence even over so many of the other ingredients in the dish, alas too much capers and gerkins, i had to pick them out.

      My favorite dish of all time!
      My favorite dish of all time!
    3. Spaghetti with seafood and tomato sauce.  Not bad, but not exactly a dish to reorder.  Too tomatoey and dry.  It’s hard to explain but pasta lovers will understand exactly what i’m saying.  You couldn’t taste the seafood and the pasta was overcooked.

      A tough dish to master... really...
      A tough dish to master… really…
    4. Beef Tenderloin – As you can see in the picture it was a big hunk of meat, nicely seared and perfectly cooked.  A 2 thumbs up.  The beef here is of great quality!

      The tenderloin was huge! Compare it to the gravy boat!
      The tenderloin was huge! Compare it to the gravy boat!

    As mentioned earlier, we said the hospitality was great and it was true!  We had a complimentary creme brulee with candle compliments of the owner, very nice!  The creme brulee was excellent by the way which was why i didn’t eat the other desserts except for a spoonful of the apple tart.  Yum!

    Complimentary Birthday Creme Brulee.. Happy Birthday mommy!
    Complimentary Birthday Creme Brulee.. Happy Birthday mommy!
    Nice desserts!
    Nice desserts!

    All in all it was a more than decent restaurant, stick to the traditional dishes and you wont be disappointed.  Great pricing, great service and some above average dishes!  We will be back!

    My lovely family!!!
    My lovely family!!! (Except me..) I took the picture!