Here are some factoids about Eat Me – Bangkok’s gastronomic veteran of a Western-style innovative restaurant + bar + gallery:
- Open since 1998, Eat Me is turning 20 years old this year. An ancient age for a restaurant, but a strong proof that quality and consistency outlive trends, raves, and everything.
- Eat Me was first listed in Asia’s Best 50 Restaurants since the debut of the awards in 2013, and has stayed there ever since. Michelin Guide Bangkok also listed the restaurant in their ‘The Plate’ category in its first edition in 2017.
- Eat Me is open every day with full kitchen and full bar running from 15.00 hours onwards until 01.00 am. So, an excellent place to grab an early dinner or drinks. Limited parking is also available on site.
It was first hard for me to pinpoint what kind of food ‘Eat Me‘ exactly serves. My online research only got me to a rough conclusion that their food is Western with a twist. The menu list, when I see it, looks normal enough, with key ingredients bolded into main categories. It reads: Fish + Shellfish, Vegetables + Salads, Meat + Poultry. And from under there, array of creations are detailed, with key components and prices. Eat Me is a combo place. Dark and twinkling are its hues. The ground floor houses its award-winning bar and a courtyard, the second and third floors the dining area which is also doubled as a gallery curated by H Gallery.
Like any other Western restaurants, Eat Me serves bread basket. But that simple welcoming dish got me excited about their dishes to come. The bread – their own homemade sourdough or the type of bread that is definitely now on the rise in the current food craze horizon – comes in a big hunk that, with its semolina-coated golden brown crust, makes me think of a good piece of pork belly. The dip is a vegetarian Romesco with a creamy mixture of tomato puree, red pepper, bread crumbs, garlic and almond. The bread has a soft and doughy texture that is also slightly fragrant. It was a tasty beginning.
We ordered three starters, all known to be famous signatures for this restaurant. Their ‘Mixed Clam‘ (Bt590++) pictured below is a delicious juxtaposition of the classics duo of cilantro and Thai preserved pork sausage (naem), along with the Western style classic steamed clams in white wine. The unique sourness and preserved fragrance of the naem pork sausage gives this dish an extra oomph. So tasty, and the best way to enjoy it is to have a spoonful of everything together in one bite – the clam, the sausage and lots of its delicious juice.
Witlof or Italian chicory or endive or radicchio is served as the main attraction on our second appetizer. Charred to render its natural sweetness, the endive (pictured below and buried under the pile of rocket leaves) was crunchy with a hint of its natural subtle bitterness. The creaminess from the fresh, milky burrata cheese gives a nice balance to the tanginess, sweet and a little nutty tastes of the dressing made of sun-dried tomato and preserved lemon. The sliced Cecina beef (cured and air-fried Spanish beef) adds to the fragrant saltiness and chew. You can always skip the beef, of course. Just inform your waiter. Charred Witlof + Burrata Salad, Bt370++.
The classic tomato salad at Eat Me has to be prepared differently. Classic ingredients of mixed heirloom tomatoes (so fresh, naturally plump, juicy, and thin-skinned) are paired with mint jelly, shredded basil, and ‘olive oil ice cream‘ which – already delicious on its own – adds a good extra lusciousness to the whole texture of the salad. The thick chunks of parmesan are also nice and nutty. Heirloom Tomato Salad, Bt390++.
Eat Me’s Bar Manager ‘Buntanes “Pop” Direkrittikul‘ just won himself the ‘Bartender of the Year 2018′ awards from Bar Awards Bangkok. This is definitely the place to drink wild. Creative, mysterious, and beautiful drinks in their ‘Sip Some Thai’ drink collections are all worth taking note. They are made into ‘Som Tam Poo Pla Ra,’ ‘Laab Moo,’ and ‘Kaeng Tai Pla‘ – all fiery Thai dishes way beyond my imagination to be a drinkable drink. But here they are. Drinkable and fantastic. ‘Kaeng Tai Pla’ (or fish liver curry, front) and Featherweight (backdrop) cocktails, Bt350++ each. For their full drinks and food menus, click here.
Tim Butler – the renown head chef of Eat Me – is known for being super fussy about his raw ingredients. He explains at length about the importance of freshness in his foods, and that he always sources from the freshest no matter where and how far and how expensive they are. Many of the featured fishes on his menu are from Japan, only because he can connect to the suppliers who can provide him with the freshest available. Below is Hamachi Collar, charred and served with sea urchin butter, garlic and scallion (Bt690++ for 200g and Bt1,380++ for 400g). The skin crisp and aromatic in contrast to its feathery, creamy flesh. The green lime helps lightening up the tastes, because despite being a fish, this is a heavy tasting thing.
Below is a plate of A5 Wagyu Tataki or cooked a la plancha that leaves the interior still rare and buttery. The crust of the beef is heavily salted, and that goes well with the creamy saffron mayo sauce. On the side are sweetbreads (of a lamb) in a batter fry and a charred padron pepper to cut the all the greasy tastes. (Bt1,150++ for 75g, Bt1,500++ for 100g and Bt2,900++ for 200g).
Sides from their menu all look delicious and feature mostly plants which are my daily staples. We ordered ‘Potato Leek Gratin, (Bt230++) that comes in a small bowl with a beautifully creamy brûlée top. The potato thinly sliced with a good mixture of translucent leek. Super luscious and cheesy and tastily seasoned. Love this one.
For dessert, I know that I should have tried their famous flourless dark chocolate cake, but their sticky date pudding served with hot butterscotch sauce and vanilla ice cream (Bt350++) below looks too tempting to pass up. The pudding was lighter in texture than I had expected, but still sticky and moist enough, with nice fragrance of the dates which I think are the Chinese dates. And for butterscotch? I love butterscotch in all sorts and forms. So, definitely a good choice to end this delicious and special meal.
This is a high profile, creative cuisine that is up there on most people’s bucket lists. For us, this is a lovely exploration of tastes, or eating and drinking into the minds of the chefs and bartenders. So, a nice place to enjoy a new culinary experience especially when you feel like giving yourself a real gastronomic treat. For us, all the stars go to their mixed clam, their sourdough, their salads and sides. Creative, light and delicious.
Eat Me, Soi Pipat 2 (a subsoi inside Soi Convent), Silom (about a song walk from BTS Saladaeng, Bangkok. T: (+66) 02 238 0931. Map. Open daily: 15.00 – 01.00. full kitchen and full bar throughout the opening hours. dress code: casual.