A whole year has passed. Restaurants have arisen and restaurants have fallen, a mirror of the economic situation perhaps? Will things get better? Seeing restaurants with no customers is not healthy for anyone.
We remain impressed with the Royal Cliff’s Grill Room and their Maharani Indian. Centara Phratamnak on a Saturday night for the Ruffino BBQ is another to stand out. Ruffino restaurant, Centara Grand Phratamnak, tel. 038 250 636, Centara Mirage has maintained its standards with the Acqua restaurant. Acqua, Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort, telephone 038 30 1234,
Newcomer Mövenpick out at Na Jomtien was another eye-opener.
However, I have picked out some free-standing restaurants for honorable mentions, as this is where you can find some amazing places to eat.
At the cheaper end of dining, AEC has kept its standards high and its prices low. It has to be the number one in budget eating. AEC Restaurant, Chaiyapornvittee Road (1.5 km from Sukhumvit Road), open 8 a.m. until 10 p.m., on-street parking at the front, telephone: 089 245 7088.
Another which continues to impress is Kung and Pinky, well cooked, large portions and Sunday Roasts are a sell-out. Kung and Pinky (unknown soi), open 8.30 a.m. until 9.00 p.m. six days (closed Thursdays), with Sunday roasts noon till 2 p.m., telephone 087 043 3905.
Into pub food and Jameson’s continue to be the top venue. Sunday roasts are so large you could keep on eating till Monday. Jameson’s Irish Pub, 80/164 Moo 9, Soi Sukrudee (Soi AR), Central Pattaya. Secure parking. Open seven days 9 a.m. until late. Telephone 038 361 873, email [email protected] and www.jamesons-pattaya.com.
Somsak(di) has great food and Somsak is the elder statesman in Thai/Euro restaurants. The largest menu in town. Ignore the spelling. Look for the towel over the shoulder. Pattaya Soi 1, tel. 038 428 987.
Indian food, and there appears to be a new one every week (have Indian Tailors changed direction?), but Ali Baba remains top for the Dining Out team. They will also cook to order, important for those who don’t want too much spiciness. Ali Baba Tandoori and Curry Restaurant, 1/13-14 Central Pattaya Road, Pattaya City, telephone 038 361 620 or 038 429 626, fax 038 414 464.
So to my top three. Yupins at Jomtien Complex continues to get better and better. Innovative menu, happy staff and a good selection of inexpensive wines. Tel 087 062 9672.
Café des Amis continues to be in the top rank and the cocktail bar is the best. Take your pick from 100 whiskeys! Café des Amis, 391/6 Soi 11, Thappraya Road, Jomtien, telephone 084 026 4989, facebook.com/cafedesamispattaya ; email [email protected] ; GPS location: N12’54.792 E100’52.404.
And my pick of the year, once again, Casa Pascal. A professional restaurateur doing what he does best. Pascal has encyclopedic knowledge of food who can tell you the difference between Dory and wild Dover sole. Prices high end, but certainly not over the top. Casa Pascal, 485/M10, Pattaya Second Road (small soi next Ruen Thai and opposite the previously Marriott but now Avani Hotel’s Dicey Reilly’s Pub) Pattaya City, telephone for reservation 038 723 660, (mob) 081 983 4182, email [email protected], web www.casa-pascal.com
Now, I am aware of other top restaurants, so why are they not in this list? Simply because we did not eat there during the 12 months. If you want your favorite restaurant to feature, give it a nudge.