Saturday, 23 November 2013
Thai Food in Johor at Soul Thai 泰美味美食餐厅
Today, I was at Soul Thai restaurant at the invitation of Vincent, the Executive Director.
At first look, Soul Thai's imposing façade would make any budget conscious person like me think twice before stepping into the restaurant. (Soul Thai is on the right of the picture.)
Soul Thai is actually attached to it's sister company Soul Asia which provides traditional Thai massage services.
Stepping inside Soul Thai, the very well appointed interior includes an exclusive private room which reinforces the impression that this restaurant is only for deep pockets.
So, I was pleasantly surprised at how family and price friendly the dishes at Soul Thai are. Vincent has Thai family members and sharing Thai food with Johoreans is one of the reasons for setting up Soul Thai.
The food at Soul Thai is prepared by Thai chefs led by Executive Chef Payup Suwong who is an award winning chef from Thailand. Chef Payup has tuned the tastes and flavours to suit local palates while honouring the essence of Thai cuisine.
Let's see what we ate :D
Our lunch naturally started with a tom yam kung (RM17.90).
The helpful staff helping us to ladle the steamy seafood tom yam.
The fresh shrimps and squid in a moderately spicy murky broth with fragrant lemon grass and herbs. This tangy, sweet, savoury, and spicy tom yam is a great way to "open the appetite" as they say in Chinese.
This Soul Thai signature fried fish is another favourite. Soul Thai uses live sea bass to make this fried fish covered by a grassy looking blanket of lemongrass, spring onions, cashews, peanuts, chili and other ingredients. The whole fish is doused with a savoury spicy house blended sauce. One of my favourites of the day.
I love Soul Thai's Massaman curry chicken and potatoes (RM13.90). The curry is a interesting blend of sweet, savoury, mildly spicy and nutty. There are lots of roasted peanuts and cashews in the pot softened by cooking in curry - in a way, this Massaman curry reminds me of satay sauce but more drippy. The fresh chicken pieces were tender and sweet. I liked this Massaman curry so much that I ate and drank up two bowls.
Massaman curry originally from Southern Thailand was voted by CNN in 2011 as the World's Number 1 most delicious food. Personally, Soul Thai's rendition of this Malay-Thai fusion dish is a Must Try. (On a side note, tom yam kung is voted Number 8 and Penang asam laksa is Number 7.)
The fried crab in Thai curry. The curry has a dense complex mix of savoury and spicy flavours though it is pretty toned down in spiciness. The gravy is a tad greasy in the Thai style. I like the refreshing sweet juicy crab meat which was mostly shielded from the curry by the shell.
The pineapple rice was cooked with turmeric and topped with cashews, fried shallots, raisins, maize and peas. Being mildly flavoured, the pineapple rice complements the more robustly flavoured Thai dishes well.
Vincent is quite proud of Soul Thai's signature Thai style battered fried kang kong (RM12.90). Nice, crispy batter wrapping crunchy green kang kong inside.
The dip for the fried kang kang made with coconut milk spiced up with curry and sweetened with chicken meat.
Thai style ABC (RM4.90) is different from the Malaysian variety. There's attap seeds, ruby chestnuts, pandan worms in a bowl of coconut milk with ice.
My favourite rubies chestnut with coconut milk (RM4.90).
I am looking forward to come back to Soul Thai to try their green curry, crab cooked in tang hoon, steamed squid and, of course, Phad Thai! I love to try their Massaman curry beef too at my next visit too :D
Soul Thai is a good place for delicious Thai food in a nice environment at reasonable prices.
Restaurant name: Soul Thai Restaurant & Bistro 泰美味美食餐厅
Address: 3G, Jalan Bestari 3/5, Taman Nusa Bestari, Skudai
Hours: 11:00am to 11:30pm
No pork, no lard, no Halal cert
Date visited: 22 Nov 2013