The Dining Out Team has just returned from a totally relaxed evening, ensconced in large cushioned chairs with a gentle breeze from the Bay of Pattaya coming through, a glass of a very pleasant merlot in the hand and munching on a superb pizza. Where was this oasis? It was at the Havana Bar and Terrazzo which is in the Holiday Inn on Beach Road, a venue which somehow or other has slipped under the radar.
We were the guests of the Holiday Inn’s Panida Ottesen (yes, a daughter from the Ottesen empire) but as the Havana Bar (enclosed and air-conditioned) had been booked out for a corporate function, we went through to the Terazzo section. This is open-air but sheltered by well positioned trees. It also has a pool along one side and a circular sit-up bar in the middle of the area, and a traditional Italian pizza oven next to it as well. Quite frankly, we did not ‘need’ the Havana bar, we were as close to the fun as we needed to be.
The Holiday Inn is actively looking to attract the local population, as well as the in-house guests, so very sensibly has rotating weekly specials or themes in the Havana/Terrazzo bar and restaurant, so there is not the “Oh this again” aspect to dining there. This is on top of a full and varied menu.
Examples of the specials include a Monday wine buffet with unlimited wines by the glass for B. 899 and a Thursday two free bottles of beer with any pizza order, plus a live band from 8.30 p.m. Something every night.
The main menu is very varied. There are, for example, 22 pizzas (B. 320-395), there are 13 pastas, and 10 Thai dishes and even a children’s selection (B. 210). It does not end there with a choice of three special platters (B. 550-580) for two persons (and on a Tuesday you get two free glasses of wine with your platters). There is a complete page with Antipasti and Salad (B. 180-350), Soups, Burgers (B. 320-480), Mains (B. 490-890) with an Australian beef tenderloin at the top end. By the way, the quoted prices include service charge and government taxes.
Wines by the glass are interesting (B. 79-99-270) and predominantly Australian including one of my favorites Stonefish, and a couple of the Chilean Hugo Casanova wines which we experienced last week, and another whimsically called Kiss My Kangaroo. (I chose the Woolshed Merlot as I had not experienced this label before, and it was very pleasant.) The spirits include 10 single malt whiskys, a full range of aperitifs and liqueurs. Go on a Friday and you get 50 percent off the price per glass. Good news for the single malt drinkers!
Panida also mentioned their Hi Club, a membership discount card which is only for the Havana Bar and Terrazzo which has many benefits including up to 50 percent food discount, two vouchers at B. 500 each and a voucher for a complimentary bottle of house wine, plus many other features. It costs B. 3,500 to join, and if you like the Havana Bar and Terrazzo is something you should consider.
We began with the cocktail of the month, a cherry mojito and then went to the red wines as I felt like a pizza. I chose one of their signature pizzas, the ‘Hip Club’ which has tomato sauce, mozzarella, grilled chicken and topped with chopped lettuce, avocado and black pepper mayo. This was sensational and the avocado just made it even better.
The Dining Out team can say, with all true honesty, that we enjoyed the evening at the Terrazzo. The pizza I chose was simply superb and the 50 percent discount between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. makes their pizzas bargain basement prices. The venue is very pleasant and the service staff not ‘pushy’ in any way. We will go back, even if it is just to have another of those wonderful pizzas!
Havana Bar and Terrazzo, Holiday Inn Pattaya, 463/68 Sai 1 Road (Beach Road), telephone 038 725 555, fax 038 725 562, secure parking in the Holiday Inn car park.