Isthmus Of Kra MelbournePosted: September 17, 2013
“In southern Thailand, where the land between the Gulf of Siam and the Andaman Sea is at its narrowest, lies the Isthmus of Kra.”
Last Sunday was a super well-spent day by having awesome foods with great companies. Me and 3 of my friends had dinner at Isthmus of Kra, a Thai restaurant situated on Parkstreet in South Melbourne. We were as hungry as a bear at 07 p.m. on Sunday evening and it had made us ordered 5 entrees, 4 mains, 2 companion dishes and 3 desserts. We are not kidding when we say we’re hungry right?! 🙂
As a brother of Shakahari and Shakahari Too vegetarian restaurants, Isthmus of Kra gives similar ambient with Shakahari Too as I haven’t been to Shakahari. From the dim lighting, meditational music, aromatic incense to viscous Asian’s ornaments including the iconic “kra” statue near to the entrance’s door of Isthmus of Kra. The name of the dishes are intriguing and appealing that you’ll find out really soon in my review. Let’s start the 14 courses Thai degustation!
The half dozen oysters came on a an artistic terracotta plate and each oyster placed inside the 6 holes on the plate. The oysters bathed in refreshing lime and lemongrass red sauce and topped with herbs. I usually prefer my oyster raw but having it slightly grilled was nice too.
Barbeque Quail Secret
This was my favorite entree which is grilled jumbo-sized quail on top of kimchi/pickles and herbs sauce. The taste was not deceived by its beautiful presentation as it’s just stand out on its own. I love the well marinated and tender quail combined with the sauce made of garlic, chilli and corriander.
Isaan Beef Tenderloin
From the look, I was worried that the tenderloin would be tough since it looked dry but my logic quickly told me that would not be happened in such a restaurant of Beh Kim Un’s. Of course the thick slices of the beef were succulent and really flavorful. It’s kind of heavy but the freshness of cucumber, onion, tomato and the dressing balance the flavor.
Roast Duck Nonya Style
This duck salad won the diners’ choice that night for entree category. Yesss, we all agreed that the duck salad was exceptional! Slices of roast duck breast combined with cucumber, green mango, carrot, mints in plum sauce.
Our 5th entree didn’t get the chance to be in frame as we vivaciously finished our bowls. 🙂 The Tom Yum soup came with chicken, seafood and mushroom with a really strong combination of salty-sweet and subtle sourness soup base. It is quite strong even can be said too strong for me. AU$ 12.50
Red, Red Roast Duck Curry
Red duck curry was the star for me and it’s just effortlessly being my favorite dish of the night. Dominated by star anise, the thick red curry was very rich in flavor with generous fillings of vegetables and fruits such as pineaple, melon,broccoli, eggplant, capsicum and of course big slices of skinned-on roast duck. I need to highlight the duck skin since it escalated the whole dish for me!
Gulai came in yellow curry of lamb and chunky potatoes sprinkled with fried shallot. The yellow color resulted from turmeric cooked in coconut stock was very filling and I expected it to have stronger kick in flavor. The lamb chunks were succulent, some falling apart and some not and I loved the whole pieces more. This one was my friend’s favorite dish of the night.
The three peeps including myself were craving for seafood and decided to go for this dish! There were large prawns, fish fillet and scallops in lemongrass prawn sauce. The seafood was cooked perfectly especially the prawn was superb good but I wasn’t really in love the tangy sauce. Actually the prawn stock sauce was fresh especially with the cut of herbs and veggies but I found it a little bit too bland for my liking.
Crispy sweet and savory roti bread served with satay sauce.
Caramelised diced mangoes arranged on top of black rice pudding and sprinkled with toasted shredded coconut. The shredded coconut gave an inviting yummy aroma. The texture and flavor of this three components complemented one another, crisp and savory coconut, juicy and sweet mango, lastly the smooth and sweet black rice pudding.
A unique French style dessert of bavarois in pandan flavor that’s more Asian. The very light texture and not too sweet dessert was my favorite, a perfect outro for the dinner.
In term of service, I couldn’t ask for a better one like, really. I say this based on the caring and thoughtful service from the staffs. They changed the plates and cutleries from entree to main, cleaned up the table before dessert and our glasses were always filled.
Isthmus of Kra was an exceptional and not ordinary Thai dining experience for me. Having dishes made of fresh ingredients and beautifully crafted presentation made me happy and truly satisfied. My geek bf is dying to eat here but we didn’t have the chance to go during his 2 previous visits to Melbourne last December and May. He was a little bit upset when I sent him the pictures and probably reading this post will make him even sadder. Oh boy! That’s why you should visit me (again) 🙂