Award-winning restaurant takes diners on a sensory journey
A night dining at The House on Sathorn really does feel like an experience, a memorable event that cannot be replicated in Bangkok. The entrance from Sathorn Road—past a fountain to an 1889 colonial mansion lit up for all in the city to gawk at—merely whets the appetite.
After serving as the Russian Embassy, the property, a registered building under the Archaeological Act, was purchased by W Bangkok and spent three years being renovated. The result is stunning, and it is worthwhile to walk around and take it all in.
The Dining Room, which recently placed 36th on the prestigious Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2017 list, is a riot of canary yellow with columns, tapestries, a long wooden bar—behind which the chefs work—and kaffir lime green shutters. There is also a separate bar, and a huge courtyard in the back that serves lunch and high tea.
Chef Fatih Tutak is Turkish native, with an extensive background. His culinary journeys have taken him around the world, picking up different influences along the way. These journeys are available in his monthly tasting menus (B3,800), each created to evoke Fatih’s specific sensory memories—which the chef, or expert wait staff, can explain in full detail.
Two amuse bouches started the meal, offering an enduring impression. First, a Hokkaido clam, served on the half-shell with blood orange foam, began with a fresh citrus zest but finished with umami, an almost MSG-like burst. Then came a duck egg yolk, uni (sea urchin), and black winter truffle chantilly topped with shaved black truffle and served in an egg shell, nesting in a trunk of wood.
The journey stayed in Japan for the Tsukiji Market: tai-madai (sea bream) served with umeboshi (salted plum) and sudachi (sour citrus), topped with caviar. During his time in the country, Chef Fatih learned to wrap the sashimi in a special leaf and salt it, leaving it for seven hours to bring out the flavours. The result is subtle and slightly bitter.
The adventure can also overwhelm the tongue with velvety richness, as happens with cauliflower that’s been lovingly coated with butter for 45 minutes, paired with macadamia nuts and cheese fondue and black truffle.
But for all his panache in the kitchen, my greatest memory is probably the chef’s as well—the comfort food of his mother. A Turkish dumpling called manti is served with an intense tomato paste (made from three kinds of the fruit), eggplant, and kaymak (a dairy product similar to clotted cream), leaving a pleasing sour tanginess to envelop the mouth.
From the cocktail menu the aged Negroni (B420) is thick and herbal, redolent of star anise, while the Diva (B420) is a refreshing mix of Belvedere vodka, Patron citronge, coconut water, a rose petal, jasmine syrup, and egg white.
By Robin Banks
The Dining Room at The House on Sathorn
106 Sathorn Rd. | Tel: 02 344 4000
Open daily: 6pm-10:30pm