Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Chandrphen Restaurant, Sathorn District, Bangkok

Chandrphen Restaurant  (1030/1 Rama 4, Toongmahamek, Sathorn, Bangkok 10120, tel :  02-287-1535-6, 02-679-7930-1) is an old school Chinese institution that has been operating for 4 generations. They apparently have a prestigious history behind them since their humble beginnings till this day which has earned them a Garuda emblem from one of the kings in Thailand.

One of the dishes they had on appetizer was the salt and pepper stuffed squids. The squids are stuffed with minced bits of chicken and the flavors were largely a clean savory infusion from the bits of lightly fried garlic over the top. These slightly chewy squids made excellent beer snacks if I may say.

A little salad of tropical vegetables on the side which we had apparently neglected to use except for the sliced cucumbers which served as a placebo cleanser after all the grease in the food. On hindsight, a squeeze of the lime would have been great on the squids.

The choice of carbs was crab meat fried rice. Even though I was hoping for chunky pieces of crab meat, the generous portions of shredded flesh gave me little cause for gripes.

There was also an order of some crab nuggets which are akin to what is commonly known as hae cho in Chinese cuisine. The only difference was that the fillings beneath the thin and crispy skin of beancurd sheets were crab instead of prawn.

The insides were packed with crab meat, diced water chestnuts and even bits of lard! Certainly the best crab nuggets of any sort I've ever had.

We had an order of har gou after seeing that the menu included dim sum, but after trying them, we were positive that we've had much better.

One of the signature items that Chandrphen Restaurant is known for is known as their half century famous barbequed chicken. It was a salt, garlic and pepper flavored chicken with a delicious salty paste (can't tell what went in there) that really made the bird. While nothing mind blowing, it was a pretty good roasted chicken.

And then, we had fish maw stir fried with eggs and bean sprouts. A dish what worked on a nice medley of textures from the separate ingredients combined and was probably the most lightly salted dish we had here.

Dessert was black sesame tang yuan in ginger soup. What we loved about it was the thin skin of the dumplings that threatened to burst and unleash the hot black sesame paste fillings when you bit into them. The other pleasant surprise was that the soup was made from spicy old ginger which warmed the stomach.

The variety of dishes here was quite astounding. We've just scratched the surface of what Chandrphen had to offer. This is going to be one of those places I'll look forward to if I visit Bangkok again.

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