There are many ways that can lead to the Dining Out team going to review a restaurant. This week it was following the recommendation of one of the PMTV staff, who did warn us that it was a little difficult to find! We also knew that this was not a five star fine dining restaurant, which pleased us, as sometimes we get accused of only going to the expensive places!
Wok N Rok advertises itself as “the best UK style Chinese food in Pattaya” which does mean that the owners have a great faith in their product, or perhaps deluding themselves! We went along to see just for ourselves!
Chinese food in the UK has a long history with Cantonese style cuisine arriving with migrants from Hong Kong, and in 1907, the first recorded Chinese restaurant in London, England was opened.
In the 107 years since then, Chinese food has certainly taken over the UK, and now it is the most popular food in the UK. “Our sales figures certainly support the fact that oriental food is currently the nation’s favorite, with 53 percent of customers buying the cuisine compared to 43 percent who opt for Indian food,” said Simon Williams, an acquisition director at Tesco. “Also, our customer base for oriental food is growing faster than that of Indian,” he said.
(For those who would like to know the favorites, the order is Chinese, Indian, British, Italian, Thai, American, Mexican, Japanese, Greek and finally French.)
Wok N Rok is on Soi Buakaow, a very busy thoroughfare, and is about half way between Central Road and Soi Diana. Coming from the Diana end, it is on the right opposite a 7-Eleven and adjacent to the Chaba Hut Resort.
Parking is always a premium, but there is a car park about 20 meters before the 7-Eleven, and it offers a well spent 30 baht!
Wok N Rok is in a single shophouse, with a large banner across the entrance to help you find it. You can eat al fresco or inside which also houses a bar along one side. Simple tables and chairs and friendly staff complete the picture.
The owner is a Thai lady called Rattana, who spent some time in Scotland with her husband, and brought back a delightful Scottish accent to Thailand with her. She is also the chief cook.
We settled for a beer each and perused the menu. In typical Chinese fashion there are many items (92 in fact) and the next startling piece of information from the menu was the vast majority of the dishes were between B. 155-165. In fact there was only one item more expensive (a British fish and chips at B. 195).
It begins with Starters and Soups (generally B. 95), including chicken wings in honey chilli sauce and hot and sour soup.
Mains are next up (B. 155-165) and in sections depending upon the type of cooking and includes curries, sweet and sour, kung pao, black pepper sauce, black bean sauce, honey chilli, orange sauce, lemon sauce, Peking, oyster sauce, chow mein, egg fu young, euro, sides and desserts.
In true Chinese fashion, we ordered numbers 5, 18, 46 and 54, which we shared – these were spare ribs, sweet and sour pork, chicken satay and batter chicken in lemon sauce. They were all excellent and Rattana told me very proudly that the sauces were her own secret recipe.
We spoke with some of the other diners and all were repeat customers, and everyone gave Wok N Rok glowing reports. After experiencing the food ourselves, we also give Rattana and her Wok N Rok top marks, and undoubtedly it was “the best UK Chinese Style Dining Experience in Pattaya,” that we have tried.
Home delivery service is available to most of Pattaya and Jomtien but Wok N Rok says it may be necessary to send the meal via a motorcycle taxi, which will entail a delivery charge which they will negotiate with the taxi driver.
Wok N Rok, Soi Buakaow, Central Pattaya, telephone 092 969 4119, open seven days noon till very late, on-street parking, or in the B. 30 car park, website www.woknrok.com. And if it is important , they have WiFi.