I always appreciate it when familiar dishes are transformed into something extraordinary; taking the entire dining experience to a higher notch.
When I brought my feet inside Silk Road Thai Bistro at BGC, Taguig City last Tuesday, 26 November, 2013 for dinner, upon the invitation of Chef Cecille Chang, via my fellow blogger, Sumi of www.thepurpledoll.net, my palates were discreetly excited to sample their versions of Thai dishes and compare it with authentic ones I’ve tasted from a few trips to Thailand.
For a few seconds, my memories of personal and family travels to Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Hat Yai flashed in a blink. Devouring Pad Thai and Pork Satay at a hawker stall in Chatuchak Weekend Market in Bangkok, savoring sticky rice and ripe mango and more Pad Thai in the middle of a night bazaar in Chiang Mai, indulging Thai salad and more in Klonghae Floating Market in Hat Yai, Southern Thailand, and the list goes on.
It took no time for my senses to recognize that Silk Road makes Thai dining experience more interesting and extra-special. From its minimalist yet elegant interiors, simple but impressive bar, a wide variety of dishes on the menu, to its casual to romantic ambiance, I set my expectations a little higher.
When the restaurant manager, Ruben handed me the beverage menu, I asked him of his recommendation. I trusted his suggestion and settled with a rum-based cocktail called, Noni Kiss.
I understood why Noni Kiss is one of the favorites from Silk Road’s menu. Rich and creamy with hints of almond flavor and subtle sweetness on top, then a light rum’s kick at the finish!
Sumi tried Silk Road’s Thai Milk Tea. What’s a Thai meal without it?
It was a privilege to dine with Silk Road’s owner, Chef Cecille Chang who made my fellow bloggers, Sumi, Jonel and Marjorie and I satiated with her food, and more so, with her fascinating travel and dining stories. I personally learned a lot from our casual conversation as she started introducing her dishes plate by plate. Never I expected we’d talk about her days in Penang, while she’s learning authentic Peranakan cooking from no less than the authority in the island whom I personally met, Ms. Pearly Kee, to Chef’s Cecille’s frequent trips to Thailand to further study and master Thai cuisine, to random issues involving relationships! Her creative, passionate, adventurous and lovely personality, not to forget – she’s one of the most gorgeous chefs I’ve met to date, are a reflective of every dishes and drinks they offer at Silk Road!
We started lightly with a traditional Thai appetizer, Mieng Kham.
I may have gone to Bangkok thrice, Hat Yai thrice and Chiang Mai once, but those few trips weren’t enough for me to try all traditional Thai snacks and meals. Funny that my first time to eat this food wrapped in chaphlu leaves was in Silk Road! And did my taste buds like it? Yes, but thankfully, they served glass of ice-cold water as the flavors of shallots, shrimps, garlic, and chilies exploded intensely! What a way to start an engaging feast!
Next on our table was Silk Road’s Soft Shell Crab Roll.
I may be biased in saying that I loved this appetizer because soft shell crab is a favorite. But apparently, it’s textured, delicious and well plated!
Third to land on our table was another personal favorite, Pad Thai. To be fair with it, I tasted their version before adding sugar, crushed peanuts, soy sauce, vinegar and chilies. I was vocal to Chef Cecille that her Pad Thai was not oily unlike the usual ones we tried in Thailand before, and it’s tasteful enough even sans condiments.
Another entree we tried was Siam Chicken Wrap. We were told that this dish is a hit to many Thai and Chinese patrons of Silk Road. It’s a bit spicy but becomes balanced as its eaten wrapped with lettuce.
Chef Cecille was also sincere and generous in sharing her personal favorite among the many Thai dishes on her menu. According to her, she can have Chicken Basil from a simple store, any time by the beach in Thailand to anywhere as this dish is not difficult to love. Her version’s just right; there’s no overwhelming taste.
Tables were turned figuratively when the gorgeous chef asked us of our favorite entree. My fellow bloggers voted for Lamb Shank Massaman while I favored it as the next best thing to Silk Road’s Siamese Pork Belly.
Lamb Shank Massaman. Served with crispy noodles, sweet potatoes and shallots.
Slowly cooked to perfection for 8 hours, this has to be one of the best lamb dishes I’ve tasted! Very tender as it actually falls off the bone; no-aftertaste! Highly Recommended!
As I liked Lamb Shank Massaman from Silk Road, I found their Siamese Pork Belly more sublime! Think of the usual Filipino favorite Grilled Liempo but this one’s deliciously different! Served piping hot (try to slightly contract your eye muscles and look at the next photo, you might appreciate its smoke) on a somewhat-pedestal filled with charcoal, adorned with banana leaves, abaca rope and an orchid. Visually dramatic, enticingly good!
Siamese Pork Belly.
This Siamese Pork Belly’s a champion for me! And why? It’s a serving of the most tender pork ribs and belly strips, marinated with Mekhong Whiskey, cinnamon and caramel then grilled. I repeat, grilled with cinnamon and caramel! That heavenly!
Our intimate Tuesday Thai dinner perfectly ended with coffee (some had tea) and toothsome desserts.
Chocolate Pudding with Mango Ice Cream and Mango Sauce.
Takhoo Thai. Tapioca pearl pudding topped with coconut custard.
So next time you find yourself around Bonifacio Global City, craving for some fantastic Thai dishes for lunch or dinner, that will not cost you an arm and leg, or perhaps when you’re in the mood for some drinks, head on to Silk Road Thai Bistro and let me know of what you think.
Silk Road Thai Bistro | Net Quad Corporate Center, Shop H, 4th Avenue corner 31st Street, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City | Operating hours : 11AM-3PM (lunch); 6PM-2AM (dinner) | facebook : https://www.facebook.com/silkroadthaibistro
*Special thanks to Chef Cecille Chang for the invitation and of course, to my fellow bloggers, Sumi, Jonel and Marjorie.