SILK, Thai Restaurant, Andara Resort and Villas Phuket
Words by Kirsten Durward
Photos by The Yum List (Monica Tindall)
The over all impression on entering, SILK is once again, as all over the Andara Resort and Villas Phuket, space, space and more space. Look out through floor to ceiling seamless windows to the infinity pool, to the sea and sky beyond. Mellow, with an understated opulence, toned in soft browns and golds inside, whilst outside dappled light glimmers in the water garden and soft spotlights light up the palms in the deep blue sky. With solid dark wood tables and opulent ceramic pots bursting with plants and flowers, if this is Thai style, it is surely the regal side of Thailand.
|Andara Resort Pool - Perfect Spot for Sundowners|
We begin with cocktails at the pool bar. Well readers would not expect less of us and we hate to disappoint! The evening view down over Kamala beach is very pretty and I am sure is even better on days with a sunset. We try an aptly named Land of Smiles, a twist we hear on the Tom Yum flavours. It’s an instant hit with us slightly sourer palated cocktail drinkers, a good twist of kaffir lime combining with lemon grass, vodka and Galliano to create an early evening refresher.
Silk 88 is slightly more mellow but happily contains one of my current favourite flavours, lychee. It’s a not too sweet cocktail with good body well in a soothing balance of lime juice, vodka, lychee liqueur and a dash of syrup. Fine for Lunchtime and Sunset Happy Hours on a two for one deal!
Hosted by Guest Relations Manager Pascal, we probe for insider secrets on where else to eat and drink and party on the island. Perhaps we’ll share those with you at a later date! Our threesome is joined briefly by the delightful Chef Ooy, who will be sharing some of her cooking skills with us tomorrow during an outdoor cookery class, one of the Andara’s signature guest activities. We debate which will be the best dishes to prepare and decide on a couple from tonight’s menu before heading inside to taste them.
To taste a range of what SILK’s Thai kitchen has to offer we begin with the SILK Ruam Mix (THB 470), a generous mixture of signature starters, served with a choice of four Thai sauces. Taaud Man Phau are golden fried fish cakes. Goong Sarong are prawns wrapped in Phuket noodles and crispy fried. I’m to find out just how technical this wrapping is in my class tomorrow! Gal Hor Bai Toey is deep fried chicken in pandanus leaves; we eat this one with a yummy spicy sesame sauce. Of course our favourite of the four is Pau Pia Taud, vermicelli noodle spring rolls with cabbage spring onions celery and taro, which we douse in plum sauce. It’s recommended as a dish to share.
|SILK Ruam Mix|
Satay Gal (THB 320), marinated chicken skewers, presents attractively in a leaf cone. The pieces of chicken are thick and soft with slightly lemony undertones. We love the Thai style satay sauce, which is creamy, dark, thick and well spiced.
Yam Som O (THB240), pomelo salad is simply sensational! We hear the sauce takes two hours to cook and then it must cool. What looks simple is a complex combination of herbs, lemongrass, chili, ginger, lime and the abundant fragrance and taste of tamarind. The slithery soury sweet pieces slip down oh so easily and I could easily order this dish again.
|Yam Sam O|
Goong Pad Broccoli (THB350) is a simple dish of lightly stir-fried broccoli, asparagus and fat prawns in oyster sauce with garlicky overtones. Naturally we are happy that the veggies are crunchy and the oyster is not overpowering. This is a great complementary dish to some of the stronger flavours on the table.
|Goong Pad Broccoli|
Ped Ob Sauche Khing (THB520) is traditional roasted duck ‘Silk Style’. It’s sweet, savoury and sticky. The duck is divinely delicious just the perfect texture for savouring. Great flavours of ginger, chili and soy abound. There are plenty of dark leaves in the mix, and I love the fresh butteriness of the accompanying slender asparagus shoots. Steamed jasmine rice is perfect for soaking up more of this fragrant sauce. We can see why this dish comes under the ‘Chef Recommends’ section of the menu.
|Ped Ob Sauche Khing|
Massaman Gai (THB 390) is a yummy light curry full of flavor. Coriander, nutmeg, cumin, lemongrass and cardamom are just a few of the spices used to make this particular palate pleasing paste. Of course anything with coconut milk gets Monica’s vote so this is a sure fire winner. But we love the softly separating chicken thigh meat and the use of sweet potato is inspired. It’s a delicious dish and one you should try.
Panang Tao Hoo Taud (RM300) looks very tempting on the plate. I bite into a cube of the lightly crumbed crisped tofu to find an exceptionally light and floaty centre. Another technique for me to master tomorrow in our cooking class! I’m not really a tofu fan and probably wouldn’t have ordered this, so I’m really happy that it was on our menu and I tried it. A total delight of the first order, I promise you! The sauce is heavenly, the chili and coconut milk are there, but not overpowering, it’s a very subtle blend of flavours, turmeric and coriander root amongst them. We just love the shredded kaffir lime leaves and basil in this sauce. It’s a fresh and fragrant Yum!
|Panang Tao Hoo Taud|
Pascal has treated us to a bottle of Australian Semillon. He told us he was fearful of choosing a wine for us! We both admit that for the Thai flavours and climate we are much happier with white, and lovely though Sauvignon and Pinot Grigio by the glass are, it is lovely to have a fresh change. The Torbreck Barossa Valley Woodcutters Semillon is refreshing, medium bodied, on the dry side. I enjoy the aromas of fresh apple and pear, on tasting it is full and, slightly savoury notes of coriander combine with warm lemon for an enjoyable textured wine. And indeed, it complements the food extremely well.
We decide to take a ‘digestif’ before dessert, yes after all that food it is definitely needed. Monica is excited to see a Peruvian Pisco (THB 680) on the menu and persuades Pascal to partake of one with her. I am happy to savour a Hennessy VSOP (THB850) in a delightfully large balloon.
SILK does offer a range of European options on the menu as well as all the Thai delights, so we turn to that side for our dessert choices. The homemade Carrot Cake (THB250) is moist and fluffy. Served with a little light whipped cream and a delightful orange sauce. Baked cheesecake (THB220) is very smooth textured and lightly orange in flavor.
But it is the Belgian Chocolate Mousse (THB220) that steals the limelight, despite Pascal’s warning that we might as well be sticking it straight to our hips (so charming!). I’m in heavenly happiness with this dessert and it’s enough to share with Monica too, a very generous portion. Luscious, smooth and velvety dark, this is a decadent dessert that is worth travelling for. I’m sure a picture cannot do it justice, you must, you must come up and give your taste buds a terrific 3D treat!
We’ve been told that SILK is somewhat pricey but we actually find that compared to some beachside eateries, prices are very reasonable for the quality of food and ambience you enjoy. The attentive service would have been completely unobtrusive but that Pascal insisted on introducing every server to us by name and nationality. It's another indication that the Andara Resort and Villas Phuket truly values each and every member of the hotel staff.
Reasons to visit: spectacular location: elegant ambience: high class Thai food; decadent Chocolate Mousse; extremely attentive service.
Andara Resort and Villas Phuket
15 Moo 6