Bye Bye, Bangkok and The Case for NAHM

It was meant as a brief stay to try and regain the consciousness and steady feet we associate with AOTT&S (adequate orientation to Time & Space), and, having done so, for the most part, it is time to head North.

But first these words on Bangkok and NAHM.

Yesterday was chock-a-block with meetings with T + L Southeast Asia editors over a good lunch and coffee.  Grilled this, Pan fried that, raw vegetables, smidges of heat creeping around like tetrapods infiltrating the WSF (whole sensory field).

The DC (day’s crisis) centered around a missed massage when a kind person gave me the WD (wrong directions) to a hotel near the spa.  Then the skies darkened, the wind picked up, and moments after I entered the amazing Sky Train station, rain pounded down.  It was a beautiful sight.

TVN (that very night), back on the Sky Train to the Metropolitan Hotel for dinner at NAHM.  This is David Thompson’s place, and we all know that DT wrote the definitive book on Thai cuisine.  It’s his Bangkok Outpost of the one-star with the same name in London.

We are talking by far the best Thai beef curry I have ever had.  And why is that?  Great balance of galangal and lemongrass for one thing, but far more important?  The quality of the beef.  The kitchen uses Waygu: Rich, good amounts of fat, beautiful texture.

Some mystery as to why 99.999% of Thai (and Chinese and Indian and Italian and French and “New American” and Mexican, etc.) restaurants are pretty dreadful: The chefs don’t spend money on the best product.  Three reasons they don’t: 1) Their customers don’t demand it.  2) The chefs don’t know how to write business plans that will create profit from sources other than the product.  3) The chefs are perfectly satisfied with what they are doing.

So when you discover a place like NAHM, it’s pretty thrilling.  This is a restaurant where you might change how you think about Thai food.  In a good way.

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