About a month ago, on a typical sunny, humid day in Taipei, my gmail notification popped up on my phone screen. Immediately, my eyes lit up.
It was an email titled “ Greetings From the House on Sathorn" sent from Fatih Tutak, the talented Turkish chef who led the restaurant to be listed as no. 36 on the Asia's 50 best restaurants list this year. I was invited by Chef Tutak to dine at The Dining Room and the next thing I know I was already on the flight to Bangkok, Thailand.
The House on Sathorn is a 128-year-old colonial building that was once the Russia Embassy until 1999. The House is situated in the heart of Bangkok’s financial district adjacent to the W Hotel. The vibrant yellow and green colors immediately caught my attention.
Walking through the corridor, it was almost like entering a secret hideout and escaping from the hustle and bustle of the city.
The House is surprisingly larger than I imagined with a dining room, lounge/bar area, conference and VIP rooms on the second floor and a spacious courtyard filled with greens juxtaposed under the gaze of Mahanakhon Tower. The overall ambience evoked memories of an opulent past era. What makes The Dining Room so unique is definitely its charm of combining the old with the new.
With that being said, let’s head into a contemporary gastronomic journey with chef Fatih. To be honest, I didn't anticipate Turkish cuisine being so delectable and it would be one of the best dining experiences I’ve ever had, but that's exactly what happened.
The Dining Room serves mostly dishes that express a strong Turkish heritage and influence but with a modern and innovative Asian twist. The concept focuses on presenting Turkey ingredients and its rich history using both traditional and modern cooking styles.
I had the Signature Journey tasting menu. A 9-course menu featuring a wide variety of modern Turkish influenced cuisine. A few of my favorites are: Umami of Anatolia, Constantinople, and From My Mum.
See what I ate at The Dining Room in the pictures below:
Mezzes - 1
dolma / hokkaido sea urchin / oscietra caviar
Mezzes - 2
babaganoush / tart / za'atar
Mezzes - 3
bosphorus black mussel / tarator / shell
Mezzes - 4
shakshuka free-ranged egg / spinach / fenugreek
Mezzes - 5
house fermented turkish pide / cultured butter / honeycomb
Umami of Anatolia
Kyoto farm tomatoes / aged pomegranate / feta dashi /parsley
This was my favorite dish of the tasting menu. The parsley sorbet gives the dish a very refreshing texture as it melts right in your mouth along with the sweet juicy tomatoes. The feta dashi adds a nice sour taste to sweet tomatoes without overpowering it.
Vikings Discovered Istanbul
nordic scallops / mediterranean black olive / sea fennel
tuna belly from tsukiji / byzantine garum / 24K onion
From My Mum...
manti / eggplant / mint butter/ kaymak
This was another favorite dish of mine. Chef Fatih explained to me that this is one of his favorite home-cooked dishes growing up by his mother. The kaymak (mozzarella) adds a nice touch to the manti (Turkish dumpling).
We also got to try the lamb ( not on the signature menu)
The Black Sea
corn meal / kashkaval cheese / kale
Surf & Turk
andaman rock lobster / sujuk / sabayon
royal pigeon / antep pistachio / summer cherries / leek
This was my first time eating pigeon. I was a bit scared, and worried about if there is going to be a gamey taste of the bird. However, it was unexpectedly delicious. I love how there is a story behind this dish: the pigeon could not deliver the message, lucky for us, the message is tied on its foot so we can actually open the envelope and read the message.
Hallucination of Winter
nagano grapes /yogurt /atsina
chestnut / turkish coffee