VN Garden Restaurant

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How many restaurants are there in Pattaya? I have seen an estimate that was over 3,000, but after doing our review last week, make that 3,001. There is one restaurant which is so well hidden that it could not possibly be seen to be counted! That honor goes to the VN Garden Restaurant.

Let’s get you there first. Go to Pratamnak Soi 5 and drive all the way down until the road splits in two, and take the right hand fork. Now drive well down until the road begins to level out and on your left is the brightly lit VN Residence 2, which has the VN Garden Restaurant hidden on the ground floor, overlooking the swimming pool.

Relaxing ambience overlooking the pool.

Go through the lobby of VN Residence 2 and out onto the deck overlooking the swimming pool, and you have arrived!

The restaurant general manager is Helmut Zimmermann, one of the most experienced (30 years) restaurant managers in Pattaya, and this new restaurant shows Helmut’s attention to detail, even down to the neat lanterns on the tables.

Tables are large and glass-topped and the chairs large enough to keep diners comfortable. Although you are dining under the stars, there is a movable roof if the weather turns inclement.

Deep-fried sole was moist and delicious.

The wine list is not extensive, but neither is it expensive with many bottles around B. 1,500. On the review night there was also a wine special at B. 790 which I decided to order on the spur of the moment. It was decanted and allowed to breathe and was a perfectly adequate tipple as a vin de table. (There is always much snobbery with wine with people judging the wine on price alone. As everyone has a different palate, go by what you enjoy.)

Very enjoyable plump scallops.

The menu, like the wine list, is not extensive, but similarly not expensive. A bit ‘gimmicky’ but there is a reading light attached to your menu to make night life a little easier. There are several Thai dishes (B. 190-210) and European starters B. 160-280 including garlic shrimp, Greek salad, beef carpaccio and stuffed mussels.

Main western dishes included such as Beef Stroganoff (B. 320), rib eye steak (B. 590), rack of lamb (B. 850), Dory (B. 380) and sea bass also B. 380. Pork dishes ranged from B. 220-340.

Comfortable seating in dining area.

For our first courses, we both chose soup. Madame had a lobster bisque and I had the clear chicken soup. Both soups were served hot to the table and we enjoyed our choices.

For my main, I had selected Zurich style pork steak with roesti potatoes, one of my favorite European dishes, and this was an excellent example. Madame went for the lamb cutlets, after hesitating over the rack of lamb, and was also very happy with her choice. The portions were quite large, so I checked with Helmut to make sure we received standard size, which he assured me was the case. With a little look at some other tables it became obvious that they do indeed serve large portions!

Follow the sign for a great meal.

With both of us replete there was no room for desserts, we finished the last of our wine special and went back up to Soi 5.

VN Garden Restaurant comes across as a sophisticated Norwegian styled venue where one can enjoy an excellent meal in quiet surroundings (you can even hear the tinkling of the mini-waterfall beside the pool). It lends itself to long evenings and a glass or three of red wine (Helmut can guide you on choice). Well worth a visit – Pratamnak Soi 5 and take the right fork and go to the bottom and VN Residence 2 is on your left.

VN Garden Restaurant, Pratamnak Soi 5, open seven days, 9 a.m. until 11 p.m., plenty of on-street parking, telephone 089 804 1450.