169 Dinso Road, Phra Nakorn District
Phone: (66-2) 685-4531
There isn’t much in the way of fine dining in Bangkok, at least not where Thai people go to splurge or celebrate a special occasion. The fancier restaurants are for tourists or expats, most often found at hotels. But there is traditional and celebrated cooking, and one of the most celebrated is Krua Apsorn (there’s two ouptosts). Everyone who’s anyone seems to have eaten at Krua Apsorn, including the Thai Royal Family, who frequent the eatery often. Still, the decor is minimal, but clean and the waitstaff attentive. (And the bathroom is entirely usable!)
We settled into a table next to the window, looking out over the bustling Bangkok streets, watching motor bikes and tuks-tuks whiz by while we reveled in an ice cold Singha served up in a frozen mug and air conditioning, which is hard to come by in these parts. They serve a very good Crab Omelet (but not as good as Jay Fai’s!), served with an addictive, sweet chile sauce, but that’s not the reason to eat here. The reason to come to Krua Apsorn is the Sour Yellow Curry with Prawns and Lotus Shoots, a wonderfully complex and soupy bowl of curry — laden with soft, slightly crunchy shoots, fresh prawns, and plenty of tamarind — with an underlying heat that seems to illuminate all the nuances of the ingredients without overpowering it. There’s a wonderful Green Curry, too, brimming with itty bitty Eggplants, Prawns, and Mushrooms. And they make the best Stir-Fried Morning Glory with garlic I tasted in Thailand and I ate acres of this river spinach. It’s crunchy and bright, tossed with fresh garlic and tasty nibbles of pork.
Definitely save room for dessert. Krua Apsorn serves a homemade Coconut Sorbet that will blow your mind. Sorbet blowing your mind? Yes! Like eating a frozen coconut, it’s an incredibly fresh blend of frozen coconut water laced with fresh coconut meat.