On the 8th of March 21 years ago, I entered an Italian language class and sat next to a blonde girl from Australia. In the morning of the same day, my boss, Luciano Montesi, had send me out to buy flowers for all the women working in our service. This is how I learned about world women’s day.
It was a glorious day in Rome and I was glad that my friend Jim had taken me to his language class. What I did not know at the time was that I would marry that blonde Australian two years later.
Today, we felt like celebrating this first encounter and decided to go out for lunch. We called the Patara Restaurant which is only one Soi away from us in Thonglor, Bangkok, and they sent their tuck-tuck to pick us up at 13:20 h. All four of us like Thai food, so the choice of Patara came very natural.
Patara is located in Thonglor, Soi 19. The building used to be a private residence in a single house with a large garden, I guess. Inside you’ll find an elegant Thai restaurant, just the right place for such a celebration as ours was.
The interior of Patara
The decoration is very tasteful
We ordered two starter platters, a selection of various small Thai dishes and the three dumpling assortment. Don’t get fooled by the colours. The dumplings are most delicious.
This was the first starter platter
Three kinds of Thai dumplings
Then we ordered the main dishes, among them a tofu in red curry, a green chicken curry, an oxtail red curry, some green vegetables and some rice (which came in four colours, unfortunately my photo of the rice was blurred). All of us like spicy food, therefore we just followed our instincts when ordering.
The main dishes
Green chicken curry
The ossobucco-type dish
The food was so wonderful, so perfect, so delicious; our taste buds went from one sensation to the next. This is Thai food at its best, wow. I could not believe it. Margit and the kids had visited Patara earlier but for me it was the maiden visit. This was the best Thai food in ages.
What about the wine? Food and wine pairings in Asia are at times a challenge. Patara has a well assorted wine list. Since the first encounter had taken place in Italy, I choose an Italian wine. The ‘2005 Campogrande Orvieto DOC Classico Superiore’ by Antinori seemd to be just the right choice.
First, many times we had stopped in Orvieto when returning to Rome from Umbria so that a lot of happy memories are tied up with Orvieto Classico wines. Second, just a day earlier we had this wonderful ‘2005 Antinori Tignanello’, so I thought why not stay with the same producer.
Wine is expensive in Thailand. The bottle was under 2000 Bath, not bad for a restaurant offer. I know that this wine retails for about US$ 10-12 in other parts of the world. The wine has a pale straw colour. It is elegant and fresh. The wine has a good structure and a very pleasant palate of tropical fruit.
As typical for Orvieto Classico, the wine is a Trebbiano blend. Varieties include Procanico, Grechetto, Verdelho, Drupeggio, Malvasia and – surprise surprise – Chardonnay (15 %!). Antinori went up to the maximum allowed as regards Grechetto (27%). With the exception of Verdelho and Chardonnay, I have never tasted any of the individual varieties included in this blend as single wines.
After lunch the children entertained themselves in the garden.
These are the ingredients for Irish coffee. It’s worth to order it. It’s freshly made at the table, a spectacular show, truly amazing.
The finished product: Irish coffee
Before we got on the tuck-tuck again, we were served refreshing towels. What a wonderful celebration this family meal was, a delight for the palate, a pleasure for the eyes. The staff at Patara is incredibly professional, very friendly and extremely helpful.
If you want to experience something special and you have the chance to drop in a Patara Restaurant, please do so. I highly recommend it. And if you are in Bangkok, the choice is clear: visit Patara, its’ worth it.
Patara Fine Thai Cuisine
375 Soi Thonglor 19 Sukhumvit 55, Klongtonnua Vadhana,
Tel. 0-2185 2960-1 Fax. 0-2185 2962
PS: Patara restaurants can also be found in Singapore, Taipei, London and Geneva.