December 2016, Mark and I traveled to Thailand with his family. One of requests on this trip was to visit Gaggan, we discovered while watching Chef's Table on Netflix. We happened to be stopping in Bangkok for a few nights before heading off to explore the rest of the country. Booked and excited to go to this exciting progressive Indian restaurant in Thailand. For myself, this would be a brand new adventure, not only my first trip to a new country but I'd be trying an array of Indian food which I've never been to keen to try.
In preparation, Mark made Chicken Tikka Masala from his favorite cookbook, America's Test Kitchen. Yes, it was good (I'm convinced it was extremely Americanized). But I told him to not worry and I'll just do the best I could! And I did!
You HAVE to go watch the episode (Season 2, Episode 6). Gaggan has an amazing story on his way to creating the #1 Restaurant in all of Asia. We just recently rewatched the episode to reminisce. Honestly, the coolest experience of all and one we will always remember and treasure.
On our way to the restaurant, we were running late from a temple we had just been touring and were stuck in horrendous traffic (worse than LA and San Francisco traffic). We were going only about miles and it took us over an hour. Luckily, our driver was nice enough to call the restaurant and explain in Thai that we were running late and to hold the table. We got to the restaurant which was this adorable colonial home, completely white washed, with mismatched tables and chairs adding to the uniqueness. Even though we ran almost an hour late we were thankfully seated and served immediately. We got rapid fire plates and it made the experience awesome even after a long hot day of traveling around the city. The host and waiter explained most of what we would be getting, Gaggan likes to leave some things to a surprise so we were told what exactly we ate after we had ate it.
The menu was a transparent sliver of paper with emojis on it. Yes, EMOJIS!
All our dishes were designed to look just like these emojis. Each and every one was phenomenal! Every dish our waiter told us how to eat it, because there were definitely a few dishes we weren't sure how to eat. For example, Yogurt Explosion, eat it in one bite so you don't make a mess. Plastic Nuts- the bag is completely edible! Chocolate Chilly Bomb, place the entire chocolate in your mouth, close and then bite. Which we all quickly found out it explodes in your mouth. I took pictures of each dish, I apologize for the quality. I was in a rush to eat, so my pictures weren't up to top quality and I couldn't find good lighting.
By the time we got to the classic curry, I was so full I couldn't finish. But Mark was happy to eat the extra curry. We finished our entire meal and had lemonade shots, which I sadly didn't get a picture of, and we were off to our hotel to sleep happily in our food comas.
As I've repeated many times now, this was by far our best experience of a tasting menu. Not only was it in a different country but it wasn't the traditional French cuisine.
If you are planning on visiting this amazing country, do make a reservation at Gaggan. He is closing it by 2018 and opening a new restaurant in JAPAN (by 2020). Just another reason to travel!