Sometimes we eat at a restaurant for the first time, and instantly add it to our
list of favourites.
Places such as Tha Sai Seafood, which we visited on March 3 for a late lunch, feeling hungry and thirsty after spending half a day exploring caves, a very odd temple, and a forest park with waterfalls.
We parked hesitantly by the restaurant while the local village idiot tried to suggest we park in a different spot. It looked rather quiet, and from the road did not look like anything amazing really.
Then we walked through the entrance, and suddenly we were wowed. Not obvious from the road, the restaurant is actually right next to a wide mangrove river. There are several levels of seating, and we chose a table lower down.
What a beautiful spot. “We're coming here again, so long as the food is good!” I said. We had not even ordered, and a return visit was already being planned! As we pondered the menu, a longtail boat chugged its way past the restaurant out into Phang Nga Bay.
Being a late lunch, there were only a few tables occupied, though I saw plenty of staff around, which indicates that is is a popular place.
And a popular place in the middle of nowhere has to mean that people are willing to drive a bit for good food. And yes, the food was good.We ordered all kinds of dishes. One of my favourites was a dish called yam pla dook foo, or fluffy fried catfish salad.
Another one of my new favourites – thanks to my wife who insisted I try it – was poo nim – soft shelled crab fried with garlic. And it goes just perfectly with a cold beer, served with ice of course.
It was one of those happy afternoons: find a new restaurant, enjoy great food and views. While Thai Sai Seafood is a bit far to drive from Phuket just for lunch (about 1.5 hours), it’s worth visiting if you’re already exploring Phang Nga. Days like this remind me how lucky we are to live here...
Jamie Monk works at liveaboard dive specialists Sunrise Divers. For more information call: 084 626 4646 or visit: sunrise-divers.com