There are people who think that East Pattaya is still “the Dark Side”, a strange place inhabited by aliens. Likewise there are those who think that Naklua is some far away town close to Sriracha. (But no aliens!) However, let me assure you that Naklua is a very vibrant community adjacent to Pattaya, with some of the best hotels on the Eastern Seaboard. The Pullman Pattaya Hotel G is one of them.
Where is the Pullman? Go to Soi 18 on the Pattaya-Naklua Road, drive down to the bottom and turn right alongside the Centara Grand Mirage and keep going for another 600 meters and the Pullman Pattaya Hotel G is there on your left (and after Northpoint).
The style of dining envisaged by Chef Thierry is an evening of communication.
The Dining Out team went to try the Pullman’s “Bodega Festejar”, at their Pool Bar, at the invitation of Jenny, their live-wire PR lady. The Bodega nights are a very special promotion on the Wednesday evenings from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m., featuring the Spanish style of eating and drinking, with many different tapas for the guests to try.
If you are not familiar with tapas, these are a wide variety of appetizers, or snacks, in Spanish cuisine. They may be cold (such as mixed olives and cheese) or warm (such as prawns in Ricard – which were brilliant, by the way – thank you Chef Thierry). According to Wikipedia, the serving of tapas is designed to encourage conversation because people are not so focused upon eating an entire meal that is set before them. Also, in some countries, it is customary for diners to stand and move about while eating tapas. That is the style of dining as envisaged by Chef Thierry, an evening of communication, and on our Wednesday, that was certainly the way it happened.
Adding to the Mediterranean ambience, from 6.30 p.m. to 9 p.m., there is Lorenzo Santos a singer/guitarist playing background music while you eat, nibble and drink.
Now to find the Pool Bar is simple. Walk down from the car park end of the stairs but instead of turning right across the bridge to the Beach Club at the bottom, you continue straight on and you will find another pool in front of you. Turn left and you are in the Pool Bar, where you will find many tables at the right height for standing and nibbling, but with tall stools as well, if you wish to rest the feet after a hard day.
Along one wall are stations just loaded with the small sized tapas, which include salads, hams, several continental cheeses (with a correct cheese knife too!), breads, various cold cuts with sauces to go with them, terrines, desserts and more. That includes a live cooking station under the very watchful eye of Chef Thierry, which on our night was prawns in Ricard. Lovely fresh succulent prawns, flamed in the Ricard. This can change, I was informed, and could be scallops or goose liver as well as the prawns.
Bodega nights on Wednesday evenings feature many different tapas for the guests to try.
Now comes the amazing side of this Bodega Wednesday evening – it is an all-up deal at B. 699, all you can eat and free flow draft beer, sangria (for that Spanish touch) and red or white wine.
The prawns I had were so good I backed up for another helping, in between trying the different tapas and cheeses accompanied by the red wine. A great relaxed evening.
Tapas also feature several continental cheeses – with a correct cheese knife too!
We enjoyed the different approach to eating out, and Chef Thierry certainly has provided the diners with plenty of choices. At the price of B. 699 for all you can eat plus a free flow of draft beer, red or white wine or sangria, it makes for a very inexpensive evening. (I know of several regular diners who can drink more than B. 699 at one sitting, let along the food side of it all!) We can definitely recommend the Wednesday Bodega evening (from now until 28th February 2013).
(TGIF a la carte on Fridays too, with rotating cuisines and Happy Hour from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m.)
Pullman Pattaya Hotel G, 445/3 Moo 5, Wongamart Beach, Pattaya-Naklua Road, Soi 16, telephone 038 411 940-8, www.pullmanpattayhotelG.com. Plenty of secure parking within the resort grounds.