When comes to dining in a resort’s restaurant, all you need is some real comfort food with local authenticity and a little extra touch, be it from the gastronomy prepared by a dedicated team or the courteous service team that almost read your mind by knowing what’ s best to order for you to satisfy your craving. The Natai Restaurant at Aleenta Phuket Resort and Spa is a typical Thai restaurant offers at its best.
Enjoying Thai food won’t go wrong when you are in the “Land of Smiles”, especially when you are vacationing on Phuket Island where the daily fresh catch from the sea is in endless supply. However, by choosing a good Thai restaurant can be well spoilt for choice too, if you have not done your homework well and play a blind tourist game by trying your luck to scout along the tourist’s track, which can always lead to disappointment. Not only can you end up paying a higher tourist’s price on your bill, but also you may have wasted your quota with that supposed quest for a meal to indulge in a good evening.
By knowing a few good places where authenticity comes to play an important part in a classic Thai restaurant is somehow through good recommendations by the locals or the establishment that had won some good recognitions to either free your worried mind or ruin your entire evening, especially in the Phang Nga precinct, Phuket. The intimate Stylish “Natai” – name after the pristine beach along north Phuket - serves modern Thai cuisine. Opened daily only for dinner, Thai dishes are the highlights from the menu, despite a few signature dishes from around Asia that were being introduced and crafted. “Everything starts with a smile and food is served in no particular order shared like a big family. We would like you to feel at home, try new dishes, order from different element boxes and experience a truly Asian meal, ask questions and understand what you enjoy eating”, the Chef commented.
The culinary team certainly knows the importance of the elements of nature and the intrinsic correlation with ancient medicine makes the exotic of Orient so interesting, healthy and delicious. “I have written a small glossary for some interesting and unusual ingredients. Let us know your preferences”. The Chef’s suggestions is certainly thoughtful and showing her passion with a work hard, play hard attitude, in order to make everyone leave this award winning restaurant when sated with fond memories and experience to go home with. It is in no doubt that you can expect good Thai food in The Natai Restaurant. When the food comes to the table, each dish distinctly speaks by itself, not only for its presentation, but every modest mouthful delights the palate. The menu is divided into different elements to raise your senses and sensitivities in your know-how of Thai’s gastronomy and other Asian delights.
We started with the classic hot and sour Tom Yum Goong prawn soup from the “WIND” element. Succulent giant tiger prawns topped the pungent soup with no hesitation in terms of the generous portion served. A perfect way to open up your appetite when it comes to enjoying Thai food, especially on a rainy evening with the cool breeze that sooths the heat of the soup brought in from the Natai beach.
From the “SAWADDEE” element, we picked the Crispy Pork Belly Salad. The witty Chef picked wild fern (one of the best alternative) instead of the usual suspects like mango or papaya and served it with coconut dressing and topped with aromatic deep fried shallots. The Pork Belly was deep fried to a light crisp and the shredded corn brightened up the presentation with a gentle touch. Such an elevated dish is divine with every morsel consumed. Aroi Mak Mak!
We let go of our favorite Pad Thai Goong Sod and chose the Pad Kee Mao instead from the “FIRE” element. Indeed, the drunken noodles fried with seafood and fresh green pepper’s presentation is deceiving and watch out for the little chili padi that’s scattered around in the dish before having your tongue burnt. But we like it hot.
Pla Neung Manao is another all time favorite must-order whenever we have Thai food. This exotic sea bass from the ‘Water” element fills your mouth with a great complexity of taste from its fresh use of ingredients to steam the whole fish. Fresh garlic, chopped chili padi, lime juice and with base of Chinese cabbage lying underneath to prevent the fish from being overcooked and lose its texture. The cilantro adds a magical scent of touch to the palette to compliment the entire dish. A bowl of good fragrant jasmine rice is a must to enjoy with this heavenly dish that exudes a truly Thai spirit, so a passionate dish to impress. (P.S. You must love chili to enjoy this gorgeous steam fish).
Thai Curry dishes certainly can’t be ignored, especially in the hands of a good culinary team that knows what they do best. The ‘Heart Bowls” section offers the Fragrant Yellow Curry with Prawns but we changed it to Duck breast meat instead for a much meatier bite. This was another triumphant dish, served with fresh lychee to balance the curry flavor, as well as the sharp-tongued kaffir leaf that enticed the dish to perfection.
A calming sea view looking out from The elevated Natai Restaurant
We wanted to have something sweet to round up the evening but unfortunately there is no room for further indulgence. It was only 5 dishes, but with superb presentation of every carefully crafted dish, the flavours danced on our tongues. We told the Chef and the attentive wait staff that we would like to come back to challenge ourselves with other senses of elements from the extensive menu offered. The Natai Restaurant is unquestionably another true and real find which we would have to say is an unspoken gem in North Phuket. Great food never lies.
Tried & Tested:
Design & Decor: 3/5
Food & Beverage: 5/5
Value For Money: 4.5/5
Signature Thai Dishes
33 Moo 5, Khok Kloi,
Tel: +66 2514 8112
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