Beachfront of Angsana Laguna Phuket, Bangtao Beach
Open time: Daily 6-11pm
Resevation: Tel: 0 7635 8500www.angsana.com
Steps away from the beach, this “House by the Sea” serves fresh succulent seafood and traditional Thai fare in a casual setting with both show kitchen and live seafood displays.
With a focus on Thai dishes and fresh seafood, Baan Talay encompasses an architecturally stunning building that emulates all things traditional Thai. The restaurant literally glows and features both al fresco and indoor dining.
The restaurant manager is waiting for us on the restaurant’s veranda, and he welcomes us with the traditional Thai greeting, the wai. He escorts us inside to a table overlooking the lagoon. We are attended to by a lovely waitress with exceptional English and a megawatt smile.
The menu consists of Thai favourites, and we quickly opt for the Thai Assorted Appetizers platter. The platter features chicken satay, onion rings, vegetable spring rolls, shrimp cakes and green mango salad, the latter of which packs a tart, spicy punch. I wash down my appetizers with a mouthwatering watermelon juice while my dining partner sips on a rich red Merlot.
Wanting to try a fair sampling of the menu, we order main dishes consisting of Larb Moo, a warm minced pork salad with Thai herbs, roasted rice powder and deep fried chili as well as a Massamun Nhua, braised beef short ribs in Mussamun curry, with ground peanuts and potatoes.
The Larb Moo is zesty and fresh, accompanied by raw green vegetables for snacking. The dish is simple and delicious and a renowned favourite in Thailand. The Massamun Curry rates as the best I have ever had. The beef is tender and melts in my mouth, while the curry is rich and creamy. The peanuts provide a salty crunch while the potatoes enhance the texture.
Our waitress insists on bringing us dessert and suggests that she surprise us. As more wine and a wonderfully presented mug of Latte art is served, Gluay Thod and Rainbow Tub Tim Grob are set down in front of us. The fried bananas from the Gluay Thod are piping hot and melt the vanilla ice cream side dish. This is a delicious, sticky sweet dish. Rainbow Tub Tim Grob is made with scrum water chestnut in coconut syrup and coconut ice cream. The dessert is surprisingly light and leaves us wanting more, even though we are absolutely stuffed.
The experience at Baan Talay showcases the traditional hospitality that Thailand is so famous for, while the dishes with their fresh ingredients really do stand out. An added bonus of the restaurant is the bistro-style open kitchen which allows for some culinary entertainment while waiting for your food.