Sunday, 3 February 2013

Tam Leak Restaurant Phuket

Sundays with Chef Peter….

Happy Sunday to you, hope you’ve had a great week and are enjoying a great weekend doing the things you love to do.

After a hectic week myself daahlings I finally had a chance to put down the piping bag and apron and meet up with Khun Toon for lunch yesterday.

One of our favourite lunches we enjoy is Thai Papaya salad (Som Tam) and Grilled Chicken (Kai Yang) and we have three or four places in Phuket where we enjoy eating these dishes the most.
One is Tam Leak which is a common name for a Som Tam specialty restaurant and, from what I could gather from Toon, translates as “pounded a lot” as they make a lot of Som Tam… I presume!

I then started to ask my Toon and my Thai friends about Som Tam and there is so much interesting information about this wonderfully simply dish that originates from Isarn, Thailand that I will devote another Sunday to it but back to Tam Leak for today.

Tam Leak’s location is best explained as follows. It is on the Chao Fah main road on the right hand side going south, just after Chalong Temple and 500 meters before the PTT gas station. The sign is in Thai so here is a picture of it to help you out!
                                                        Look for the sign Tam Leak!
There is parking for cars on the left of the restaurant.

The menu is in Thai but it is not difficult to order as there are pictures in the menu that you can point at and at the front of the restaurant all the chicken and fish is being barbequed for you to choose from. The staff are friendly and although may not speak perfect English will do their best to help you.

The restaurant consists of a main dining area which is the original part and behind this are small dining salas which are recently added and I think cute for “private dining." Music is Thai country and pleasant (I mean daahlings some of that stuff they play in some Thai restaurants just drives me mad after half an hour).
Simple but Good
The Salas

When Toon and I eat these foods we always order two small plates of each, one without chili for me, as I don’t do chili, and with Som Tam you usually get a chili kick from the pestle and mortar anyway which is just enough for me!

For lunch today as well as our Papaya Salad (Som Tam), lovely and fresh with a perfect balance of sweet and sour, Grilled Chicken (Gai Yang), tender and juicy with a crisp skin, we also ordered Grilled Fish (Plaa Pao) which is a local fish stuffed with herbs and rubbed with sea salt and barbequed. You don’t eat the skin (though I have before and thought it quite tasty) but the flesh is delicious and flaky. Pork Salad (Naam Tok Moo) which is a spicy pork salad and I like it here as the pork is not too fatty but lean, again I order without chili but it is still packed with great flavours and spices. One dish I order sometimes instead of Som Tam is Tam Tang which is exactly the same as Som Tam but with cucumber instead of papaya. I love it and find it a refreshing change. I like to take away a portion and keep it the fridge for a couple of hours until well chilled to eat when I enjoy it most.
Of course all this should be eaten with warm Sticky Rice (Kao Nieaw) which soaks up all the delicious juices from the salads and dishes.
                                                      Fresh Cut Vegetables and Herbs

Som Tam (Papaya Salad)

Gai Yang (Grilled Chicken)

Plaa Pao (Barbequed Fish)

Naam Tok Moo (Spicy Pork Salad)

Tam Tang (Cucumber Som Tam)

For drinks we had water and soft drinks (lunch daahlings!) but there are also juices, shakes, beer and whiskey which go well with this type of food.

A really delicious lunch on a lovely summer’s day and all for less than 500 Baht, not bad!

Reason to visit: Great local food and consistently good and fresh.
Downside: On the main road, can be noisy with traffic.

Food Prices: Low
Appetizers from 40 Baht

Main Courses from 60 Baht 

See you next week…

Chef Peter


  1. crisp, fresh veggies & fleshy, also fresh fish! looks excellent :D

  2. A balance between raw vegetables and the BBQ fish is really healthy!

    I however don't see the Thai prawn salad....

    1. Waverly,
      I am not a great fan of prawns so didn't order this time though they do go really well with the Som tam...
      Have a great week!

  3. Ahhhh!!!! My kind of cuisine. Drooling!!!!

    1. If your in Thailand easy, if not time for a weekend away! :-)

  4. The price is very reasonable and the food looks good too.

    Nice recommendation.


    1. Thanks Wilson, hope you will try it out.

  5. Thai Papaya salad is such a refreshing dish & I've always enjoyed having it :)

  6. Certainly worth visiting this special little place -