Lay Lao at Ari got a Michelin Bib Gourmand mention in the 2018 Bangkok. They just opened a new location at Iconsiam, the current title holder for the largest mall in Asia.
Alangkarn – means “splendour” – is a new dining zone in the Iconsiam mega-mall offering diverse cuisine including Thai, Chinese, Japanese, Indian and French at more than 30 restaurants and cafes spread across the sixth floor.
The interior design is based on the concept of Thai rice paddy fields, considered the heart of Thai food. The focal point is a tall waterfall playing with a kaleidoscope of lights. Rice paddies and rice barns as well as trees and water plants lend natural accents.
When it comes to spicy and tasty Isaan classics and fresh seafood, there’s Lay Lao. Hailing from the seaside getaway of Hua Hin, owner Panawat Chinwit knows how to find the best seafood around his hometown. Shrimp, squid and sea bass are freshly delivered from Hua Hin and Pranburi, while blue crab comes mainly from Surat Thani.
Panawat and his team personally buy vegetables and fruit at Bangkok’s Talad Thai market, rather than relying on food suppliers, to make sure they get the freshest produce. Many of their dishes are seasoned with aromatic palm sugar from Phetchaburi, which gives a pleasantly well-balanced flavour because it’s traditionally charcoal-simmered. They have to order a year in advance because they only produce a small quantity. The crab comes from a ‘crab bank’ project in Pranburi initiated by His Majesty the late King Bhumibol as a sustainable fishery.
Every table is served with a complimentary bowl of cabbage and basil, mint on ice. We ordered our drinks, butterflypea juice and lemon soda. Butterflypea, or Bluepea as we know it in Singapore, is a naturally colouring that produces the purplish-blue hue that is traditionally used in Nonya kueh. Here, it’s the natural colouring used to serve with honey and lemongrass water.
The original Ari location is famous for their som tam salads that harmoniously blend the freshest seafood from Hua Hin with a pungent, North Eastern style kick. Sweet corn with salted egg salad is a som tam base with added Thai sweet corn and salted duck egg. The cherry tomatoes were very sweet that we suspected additional sugar was added to the som tam.
Deep fried tofu spicy salad tasted just like the som tam salad. The tofu is fried to a crisp no the outside. Luckily the waitress advised us to make every a little spicy, the heat in the chilli in Bangkok is nothing trivial.
Loved their fried rice with kale and salted fish. The chef was quite liberal with the salted fish. I always like salted fish that is crumbly for my fried rice and this is what they have used.
Grilled pork shoulder is very tasty, grilled to perfection. But it was served cold. We were the only one of three tables, and the service was quite slack.
Sweet Corn Salad with Grilled River Prawn is a large prawn perfectly grilled over smokeless charcoal to retain its juiciness and tenderness. It comes with spicy corn salad mixed with green apple, tomato and avocado.
The location is perfect, the food tasty, but service needs a lot of improvement. The price is on the high side most likely because of the rental in the mall.
Lay Lao Iconsiam เล ลาว – ไอคอนสยาม
299 ถนน เจริญนคร, Bangkok, Thailand 10600
299, Charoen Nakhon Road | Iconsiam, 6th Fl, R609, Bangkok 10600, Thailand
Tel : +66 2 495 7000
Date Visited : Jul 2019