Arriving at the portals of the Sugar Hut at the top of Thappraya Road is like arriving in a different world. You leave the vibrant thrusting metropolis of Pattaya-Jomtien and suddenly you are in a world of quiet and verdant greenery, set in 30 rai of native forest.
The restaurant’s ambience could almost be described as “over the top Thai” as you climb the wooden stairs to the three salas that await your decision as to where to eat. Dark wood is everywhere and large trees offer shelter.
We were welcomed by Deputy GM Anirut Thongsukplang, who delighted in showing us the large population of fruit bats in the trees using a searchlight, and also a peacock sitting quietly on the roof of one of the salas. You are really getting back to nature at the Sugar Hut!
As this is a resort as well as a restaurant, you overlook the large swimming pool, which has 28 bungalows surrounding it, well hidden amongst the trees and bushes.
The Sugar Hut advertises itself as being in existence since 1984, and it does indeed have the air of a venue which is well settled.
We settled for one of the salas with conventional seating, as opposed to traditional Thai semi-reclining with ax pillows. I am getting a little too old for horizontal dining! The tables were covered with white tablecloths and red throw-overs.
The menu is quite large, so give yourself time to peruse. Appetizers are between B. 120-240. Noodle dishes are generally B. 170, while the Thai spicy salads range between B. 180-300.
Pan-fried items are B. 100-300, while deep-fried has most at B. 180. Steamed dishes, another popular way of cooking Thai food were B. 130-340.
We had a selection of different dishes, having been chosen for us by Anirut and began with fresh spring rolls (B. 160). These were not deep fried as in Chinese spring rolls, but were closer to the Vietnamese style.
Deep fried prawn cakes (B. 280) were very filling and we both enjoyed them.
Spiciness is part and parcel of Thai cuisine, and we were given a spicy seafood salad (B. 250) which was not too hot for Thais, but getting close to the limit for the Western palate.
The next dish was our favorite, the gaeng gari gai (B. 260) which came with banana and cashews on the side. This is a Malaysian style yellow chicken curry and is sweet and mild. With plenty of potatoes and chicken, it was also very filling. This dish is highly recommended by both of us.
There was also a Thai dessert to sample (B. 110) which came in a whole coconut and whilst the sweet cloying taste of Thai desserts is not to my liking, Madame polished hers off with relish.
We have dined at the Sugar Hut before, and it was very pleasing to see the same high standards have been maintained over the years. Not only have the Thai chefs kept the Thai taste in the dishes, but the presentation was equally as good, and again, this concept is very Thai.
We agreed that we should rate the Sugar Hut as a restaurant to which you should take any guests from overseas. The “Thai” ambience is indisputable and the website spells it all out as “The Thai Experience”. A very enjoyable evening, and the presentation of the food is sensational. Quiet shy staff add to the ‘Thainess’ of the entire (Thai) dining experience, and the prices are very reasonable.
Sugar Hut Resort and Restaurant, 391/18 M10, Thappraya Road, telephone 038 364 186, email [email protected], www.sugar-hut.com. Open seven days, from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m. Plenty of secure parking in the grounds.