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Chiang Mai Kitchen: Chiang Mai: Thai dishes par excellence
Chiang Mai Kitchen is hidden in a little alley branching off High Street. Once you've found it and ascended the uneven stairs - the building is from the 1630s -, you'll find yourself in a typical Asian restaurant - albeit one with great food!
Chiang Mai Kitchen offers all different kinds of Thai food, ranging from curries to soups. We (= 4 persons) shared five dishes (duck, beef, chicken and pork) and also ordered a huge heap of steamed rice. The food was great, but the servings were quite small.
Favorite Dish: All of our 5 dishes were great.
Chiang Mai: Scallops!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Chiang Mai is Thailand's second largest city. It is pleasantly located on the banks of the Ping river and set in a green, fertile plain at an elevation of 300 meters above sea level. It is also a restaurant in Oxford, just off the high street.
After wandering down the dark alley and opening the large oak door you are welcomed by a scattering of small Thai people. Naturally it would be quite a surprise if they were tall Thai people, so there were no surprises there. Directly in front is a staircase, off to the left a is a room of diners and to the right - a large and busy kitchen. I think there were at least 20 people working in there. We were led up the stairs to a lovely room with a huge fireplace from which I craved fire instead of the dried flower arrangement. I'm not sure and my (delightful) companion may correct me, but it is a Tudor house basically with diners spread around the available rooms. This makes it quite squashed and intimate which is good when the fellow diners are nice and would be bad if they were not. This evening they were ok and I'm sure they thought that of us too.
To start I had scallops in a rich chilli sauce. It was absolutely superb. The sauce was so good that I invited my companion to dip her spring rolls in. Which she did.
For the main course I picked out the Jungle curry -because of its name. I enjoyed my jungle curry but when first reading the menu I had already planted seeds of thought that led me to subconsciously believe it would be served in a bowl hewn from the log of a (jungle!) tree, with perhaps a small monkey model and a couple of parrots as decoration. The disappointment felt by my slightly surreal sub-conscience will not affect my overall rating of the restaurant however.
My companion enjoyed her "Neua Kra Ta" (steak on a sizzling hotplate with special sauce) remarking that it was both "favourable and flavourable", "very tasty" and "very sizzly", and noting that the "sizzle" factor for this dish was high.
Favorite Dish: Scallops
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