Nestled in the modern, yet understated Metropolitan by Como, Bangkok, lies nahm.
Voted by the prestigious World’s 50 Best Restaurants (No. 22) and Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants (No. 7) in 2015, nahm delivers the sophisticated spicing of innovative Thai delicacies from award-winning chef, David Thompson. nahm has proved itself one of the best places for Thai cuisine in Sathorn, the central Bangkok district where Metropolitan by COMO resides.
Executive Chef David Thompson believes the traditional Thai meal is an exercise in balance, with the dynamic interplay of hot and sour, sweet and salty. He uses robustly flavoured ingredients—garlic, shrimp paste, chillies, lemongrass—and melds them together to create a sophisticated, subtle elegance in which every element is in perfect balance. This includes curries, salads, relishes, soups and stir-fries, often featuring traditional ingredients less seen in modern Thai restaurants.
After a tiny bit of persuasion I managed to get myself a reservation for a Friday evening. It did help that I was staying at the hotel and also dining solo. However, if you’re more organised than me, reservations in advance are highly recommended. And like me, you’ll be very glad you did.
The light, minimalist lobby of the Metropolitan (which, by the way I love) hides the warmth and attention to detail that nahm exudes.
Dining alone, it’s often easy to feel overlooked, unimportant and as if you’re taking a table which could be used to feed 1, 2 or more others. That’s not the case at nahm. I know the tricks of dining alone so that you don’t feel uncomfortable (bring a book or iPad, sit with your back to the wall so you can watch others etc) but the staff at nahm were one step ahead of me.
Seating me just behind the till, close to the entrance enabled me to both watch all the comings and goings, but also be close enough to the staff to gain their attention. I was quite content catching up on a few emails and watching the comings and goings, but the thoughtful touch of providing me with appropriate magazines for reading material was an experience I’d love to see other restaurants replicate for single diners.
I was expecting a good selection of food….I’d looked at the website, but I wasn’t expecting so many options is willingly choose. They run a well priced set menu for 2300B which gives diners the full range of canapés plus three choices from the mains. As I was only me and I knowing how I hate to waste food, I chose the a la carte option instead. My waiter, Nattapom (sorry if I spelt that wrongly) was ever attentive, guiding me through the range of choices and showing consideration for my tolerance/enjoyment of spicy foods and any allergies. I eventually settled on canapés of pork and lobster with shredded ginger, a kingfish and pomelo salad and stir fry wagyu beef.
The pork and lobster was a delicate balance of flavours, served on bettel leaves. With a hint of chili, the softness of the meat was beautifully complimented with the crunch and slight peppery taste of the leaves and shredded ginger.
For me though, the standout dish, and one I could have eaten twice over was the stir fried wagyu beef. This was full of flavour, moist and simply divine. Despite being served with large green chilis, it was, as promised, not at all spicy.
Sadly I couldn’t squeeze in dessert – they really would have had to carry me out of there, but a glass of desert wine did the trick. And just when I thought the food had ended, I was served a delightful plate of local petit fours with my coffee.
As you can tell, I’m no food critic, but I know what I like and enjoy. nahm is friendly, warm, detail focused and aims to please all palates. The chef obviously deserves praise, but here so do the whole team from the reservations team to the front of house staff. I’ve never left a note on the bill before extending my delight and praise for all involved in a meal, but will let you know if I do again.