Star-Studded But Laid Back—Nivas Café & Bistro
Multi-award-winning chef Thaninthorn "Noom" Chantrawan has his hands full overseeing the new Nivas Cafe and Bistro, working closely with a young but talented chef "Pop" Pitchakorn Rambut to create the many traditional Thai and fusion dishes offered at the restaurant on Nak Niwat 24. Nivas essentially serves food catering to Thai tastebuds, mixing techniques and ingredients from different regions of the Kingdom, as well as the personal experiences of the chefs.
It is a hard task for both chefs to recommend a single dish because everything on the menu is made with heart and every pick is as flavourful and made-to-impress local palates as claimed. The Miang, or betel leaf wrap with fresh shrimp, fragrant fermented garlic, lime zest and shallot is refreshing and aromatic, perfect for starters. Creamy, savoury and delicious is the coconut curry with steamed mackerel lotus stem, eaten alone or even better with jasmine rice. Continue with the Golek chicken or stir-fried bitter beans with shrimp paste to taste the south of Thailand. Another dish you cannot miss is the Loumei braised pork belly with salted eggs. The aromatic sweetness of the soup and the saltiness of the egg seep into the tender flesh of the pork making the dish an excitement to the senses.
As night falls, the family-friendly restaurant turns into a bass-pumping chill-out spot. Visit the bar for cocktails inspired by Thainess. With nine signatures on the list, each bears an auspicious name, such as Indus or Gangas. The former is a strong gin-based mix, scented with cinnamon, anise and orange zest. Nammon—which means sacred water in Thai—is served in a traditional Thai goblet and is fragrant with coconut water and jasmine flower. If you're not in the mood for experimentation, you can always order something old-fashioned.
Nivas Café & Bistro
33 Nak Niwat 24
Opens daily, 10am-midnight
093 575 9533, fb.com/nivascafe