I have never been a fan of gardening. You spend time on your knees getting the weeds out, for them to regrow by the end of the following week. True! True! So when Neoh Kean Boon, the GM of the Dusit Thani Pattaya, invited us to come and try their D-Jai Garden Café, I was wondering if we were going to be handed a trowel or a spade as we entered the eatery.
However, I can happily assure you that going to the Dusit-Thani’s Garden Café does not require ‘Green Thumbs” or a whipper-snipper.
The garden concept is that of a laid back Thai eatery in a garden setting, rather than roadside. In fact, the concept has proved to be so popular, Neoh has had to add extra tents over the garden, and after spending some time there, I can see why it is just so popular. And it is not just for Thai customers. Savvy Europeans were about 50 percent of the diners.
Entry to Neoh’s garden is via the main Dusit driveway, and the kitchen and its happy chefs is immediately on your right. Faux weave chairs are comfortable and the tables are large enough for a family. Mingling amongst the diners are happy service personnel, all of which makes the dining out even more pleasant.
The morning customers (6 a.m. to 10 a.m.) are covered by including the famous breakfasts (called D-Jai and explained later) with four sets including both Thai and American breakfasts. The item which really fascinated the Dining Out team was the Pa-Tong-Go, the cruciate golden colored breakfast item which you will see being made in the roadside kitchens. I had experienced roadside Pa-Tong-Go before and it had been oily. The Dusit’s take on this was totally different. Seven pieces for 50 THB complete with three dipping sauces (taro, condensed milk and pandan). This was so enjoyable, I strongly recommend you try this item. Alternative names are Chinese donut or cruller.
Other breakfast sets include minced pork congee (Thai) and a Euro set with eggs, sausages, toast, bacon and coffee (150 THB).
During the day the chefs are kept busy preparing Som Tum, grilled half chicken (120 THB), and my favorite Khao Soi, a dish difficult to find in Pattaya but now I know where to go for an excellent Khao Soi Gai, and Phad Thai (60 THB) and more, while the evening 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. meals included Cordon Bleu Chicken (150 THB), pork medallions, salmon steak and beef tenderloin (150-180 THB), shrimp ‘Pad Thai’ and ‘Rad Na’ noodle dishes. The Indian Chicken Biryani is also available on request.
Dusit Thani Pattaya also has a D-Jai ‘To Go & Delivery’ service from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. The choice of food includes Appetizers, Thai and European favorites. Prices range from 60 to 200 baht. See the D-Jai Cuisine To Go Menu. Free Delivery with a minimum order of 300 baht (net) within 5 km of the Dusit Thani Pattaya.
Now for all those people who thought the “D” in D-Jai stood for Dusit, sorry, no prizes. The D comes from the Thai “Dee” meaning glad, jubilant, gleeful, gladsome, cheerful, rejoice or more simply “good”. Our visit to D-Jai was all of those meanings. Do go, it is an excellent and very inexpensive restaurant.
D-Jai To Go & Delivery Tel. 082 700 6188 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Djaitogo/
Must Read: Dusit Thani D-Jai Garden Café serves 5-star meals at food-cart prices.