Recently opened Lady Brett would pleasantly surprise Hemingway himself.
By Alexander Eeckhout
Reminiscent of a twenties-style New York tavern, Lady Brett (149, Sathorn Soi 12, Silom, Bangkok, 02 635 0405, www.ladybrett.com) is named after an Ernest Hemingway character. For those of you who haven’t read “The Sun Also Rises,” Lady Brett is the femme fatale and the woman around whom the story revolves. The intimate restaurant is a short walk away from Chong Nonsi BTS station, there’s room for thirty-five, and reserving in advance is recommended.
I don’t know if Papa ever went to Bangkok, but I’m sure he would be satisfied with the cocktails being served at Lady Brett. Refreshing and simple, the drinks borrow their taste from a few high quality ingredients and homemade syrups. The Stormandy (THB 330), a French take on the classic Dark ’n’ Stormy, has only Calvados, homemade ginger beer, and lime in it, but the spiciness of the ginger combined with the apple flavor of the Calvados makes for a great combination. The Green Street (THB 330) is as simple and delivers an herby punch thanks to the use of Chartreuse, gin, and a fresh delicate mint.
Sourcing the right and quality ingredients is important to the owners. They work together with local suppliers and go out of their way even for the organic eggs that come from Thailand’s northern hill tribes. The beef they use is called ku, and is a crossbreed between a Thai breed and the renowned Japanese kobe.
They try to source locally and organically as much as possible, but some of their produce is imported and rightly so. For the giant scallops carpaccio (THB 420), Hokkaido scallops are used. The scallops are seared and dressed with heated argan oil, thus cooking them slightly but still allowing enough room for the raw and natural taste of the scallop itself.
Although every plate coming out of the kitchen looks appetizing, one of the owners tells me it’s not about dazzling the customers with over-promising presentations, and more about comfort food and feeling at ease. Putting that into
bone and use my hands to get the best part of the meat of the finished pork chop from the BBQ pork chop and belly dish (THB 555). Roasted in a Spanish Josper oven—apparently there are only three in Thailand—the pork chop and belly are tender, succulent, and combined with a tangy sauce. When the house-made fettuccine bolognese (THB 390) arrives, I am pleasantly surprised when I’m told that the pasta is made in-house, as many other things are (do try their garlic bread). But when they told me they use lamb, beef, and pork for the dish, I’m a little worried that this one might be overkill. My first bite proves me wrong as I taste that creamy, comforting bolognese flavor.
Rich desserts are mandatory when it comes to comfort food. The banana cream pie (THB 225) with whipped mascarpone and homemade malted chocolate ice cream is a delicious stop somewhere between a banana split and tiramisu. Combined with an in-house roasted and ground Ethiopian coffee, accompanied by aromatic (and again, homemade) biscotti, it makes for a great finale.
To get the night started, you can pop upstairs to cocktail bar U.N.C.L.E., owned by the same people, where superb cocktails and quality alcoholic beverages can be found.