The Embassy Of Taste

Miso Glazed Snow Fish, Bt550

When Cafe Claire at the Oriental Residence first opened sometimes late last year, it brought a breath of fresh air into the local cafe-restaurant scene. Flanked between the Embassy of the United States and the Embassy of the Netherlands on the tree-lined Wireless Road, Cafe Claire serves all-day delicious dishes in bright all-white room with old-style leather upholstered booths, floor-to-ceiling glass window unveiling the pleasantly shaded Bangkok skies. This is a place to be when you want to have a good space for a chatty and scrumptious meal. Although breakfast seems to be the most popular at this place, we found their other dishes hearty, tasty and definitely worth a visit even while not exactly in the area.

Cafe Claire’s Lively and Posh Ambience

Turns out that the chef here is not exactly a new face in the upbeat local restaurant scene. After being in a team of Mandarin Oriental’s famous Le Normandie restaurant for 10 years, Chef Nattakit Kranlayanamitr went on honing his Western and Thai cooking skills in several other places, among them L’Espace at Siam Paragon and a boutique hotel in Kanchanaburi. And when he came back to the hotel restaurant scene here at the Oriental Residence, he brought with him accumulative skills and local tastes that just make this place uniquely tasty.

We came here in early afternoon, so we tried random dishes we felt like. First, we ordered Guacamole – freshly made from ripe avocado, capsicum, onion, Thai cilantro, lime and seasoned with salt, olive oil and dashes of Tabasco. This is one delicious appetizer served with crispy tortilla chips. The guacamole is sweet and nutty and a tang of onion and Tabasco sauce, just a lovely start of the meal.

Black Squid Ink Fettuccine, Bt 450

Then we tried their famous Miso Glazed Snow Fish – with a rather thin slice of the fish glazed with their house-made miso sauce and grilled on the top to make an aromatic crust on both sides. The fish sat on the wonderfully tender potato logs (slow-cooked to yield that special lovely texture) and topped with white asparagus, tenderly blanched, micro-green salads spiced with coriander seeds. A tasty combination with the accompanying sauce of pesto, miso-and-mirin dollops.

We then moved on to the hearty Black Squid Ink Fettucini tossed with a very aromatic pesto sauce thickened with crab meat and sun-dried tomato and on top of that are giant sea prawns, shaved parmesan cheese, beautiful asparagus and fresh basil leaves. A classic pasta combination made fancy by additional seafood. A comfort dish with a notch. I definitely love this dish.

Guacamole, Bt 240 and Afternoon Tea set, Bt650++ for two people

Cafe Claire is a lovely place to hang out when you have some hours to kill. They also have afternoon tea set that comes in tiered dishes of dainty sandwiches, macaroons in different flavours, and small scones served with cream and homemade jams. The tea in this case is TWG from Singapore. So if you like the look and feel of the brand, this is a place to try. The tea set is served daily between 14.30-17.00 hours.

Cafe Claire’s full bar is also an attraction on its own. Very active service from the staff is a plus. This is a place that serves Bloody Mary and Bellini (Bt220) for breakfast that you can enjoy while tugging into the all-time favorite of eggs benedict or herbs omelette along with the freshly baked items from the kitchen. I also looked at their lunch menu, and their smoked salmon trout on sourdough sandwich (Bt280) and buttermilk fried chicken (Bt350) look like they are so worth a next visit. Will keep you posted!

Coffees, Teas and Other Drinks

Cafe Claire at Oriental Residence on Wireless Road is open daily from 6am-11pm, T: 02-125-9000, http://www.oriental-residence.com. 

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