European food on the way up again?

by Miss Terry Diner

The Zeppelin German Restaurant and Steakhouse has been another of those well established Pattaya restaurants that tends to become forgotten, with all the new places that are popping up. The Dining Out Team decided it was time to re-acquaint ourselves and see if the Zeppelin was still flying!

The restaurant is almost at the corner of Beach Road and Pattaya Klang, and these days has some tables and chairs on the forecourt between the restaurant building and the pavement - all very continental.

Inside the restaurant, much of the decor is in natural wood, with the continuing theme being that of a giant beer barrel, with you sitting in the middle! Around the perimeter are windowed alcoves, with circular tables for up to six diners, while in the centre of the dining area is a very large circular table, complete with carousel, for ten people. The chairs are large and comfy cushioned rattan items, inviting you to linger and the lighting is subdued, to give a warm and inviting ambience.

The menu is quite extensive and is in German, English and Thai, and is also in beer keg shape, to continue the theme. It begins with nine hot and cold starters, ranging between B. 130-280, with prawn cocktail at the low end and imported salmon at the top end.

Seven soups are next with most at B. 90, including a Bavarian liver dumpling soup and a green pea with bacon, as well as the mandatory Hungarian goulash. Next up is a section called the Master Butcherís Favourites with a selection of typical German sausages with the Wursts at B. 160 and the Farmerís assorted sausages at B. 225.

The next section cover schnitzel items (B. 220-290) and has chicken, pork and beef on offer. Next up was a limited seafood section with four items (B. 230-340) presenting red snapper the cheapest and grilled salmon steak the most expensive.

The Zeppelin favourites are next (B. 220-420) with a large choice of European items including a goulash fillet and lamb chops. A dedicated steak section is next (B. 290-450) with steak and eggs at the bottom through to a 300 gm T-bone at the top.

Finally there are cheese platters and deep fried Camembert (B. 170-210) and a page of desserts (B. 90-140), with apple strudel and ice cream of course.

While waiting we tried the house white wine (B. 110 per glass), which was very pleasant and neither too sweet nor too dry, and were given hot bread rolls and those dreadful fiddly refrigerated butter pats in foil.

We began with the duck pate for Madame and the deep-fried prawns for myself. The pate was more like a terrine, with two very thick slices, which were exceptionally good, great flavour, and with the aspic and green peppercorns on the side all adding to the taste experience. My tempura prawns were also good, the batter being fresh and the serving dish being hot as well.

For mains, Madame chose the pepper steak, which was presented to her order, while I went for the pork fillets, stuffed with champignons and pancake potatoes. The steak was tender and delicious, and my pork likewise. For both of us, the serving was too much - very generous helpings. We were also joined by a friend who ordered the Oktoberfest chicken, and this appeared more like half an eagle, it was so huge!

We were more than pleasantly surprised by the Zeppelin Restaurant. The feeling was not that it had just maintained its position, but more that its standards had risen. It had always been considered to be good value, and the size of the portions continued to make that the situation. However, the food was also very tasty and of a very high standard, and when viewed against the prices charged, makes the Zeppelin a restaurant you should definitely consider for those times you feel like some European food - and lots of it! Highly recommended.

The Zeppelin German Restaurant and Steakhouse, cnr Beach Road and Pattaya Klang (behind Nova Lodge), Central Pattaya, telephone 038 420 016. Parking on the street, or in the Nova Lodge, entrance from Pattaya Klang.

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