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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Le Vendome Fine French Cuisine, Bangkok (English) working copy

Le Vendome Modern Authentic French Restaurant - Sukhumvit Soi 31, Bangkok

Overall Score  7/10
Taste  3/5
Ambiance 4/5
Service 5/5
Value   3/5

Going to a fine French restaurant for lunch is unusual for me, especially the Le Vendome that is known to serve great and expensive French cuisine.  But to my surprise, the attracting factor was the affordable price (lunch special) in exchange for an upscale experience.  In 2004, Le Vendome was first opened on G floor of M-Thai Tower on Wireless Road.  After a few successful years, they had moved to a secluded location, a residential property in the Sukhumvit Soi 31.  If you are not familiar with the tricky turns in the Sukhumvit back roads, check the map ahead of the time.  Parking is along the street side but there is no need to beat your luck in getting the because the restaurant has a valet service. 
Series of French and Thai Flags lining with the black “Le Vendome” flag were noticeable in the front.  During the day time, a mature tree hanging overhead created a pleasant atmosphere in the front yard.  A small swimming pool was also a nice feature to contribute to the neat garden.  Dining area was available only inside a small house.  Elegant interior decoration was extravagance; collection of crystal ware and antique elements.  Louis Furniture, Crystal chandelier, and Renaissance arts fitted in perfectly.  Though low ceiling made the whole space a bit restricted, glass windows with a view of the garden and the pool alleviated the outlook.   All physical elements within this French cottage could be summarized to one word, Luxurious!

Le Vendome's food and atmosphere luxury were so attractive and once we found out about the affordable lunch special price, we could not resist the deal.  Inclusion of appetizer, main dish, dessert, and hot drink total to a price of 380++ Baht.  

Among the three of us, we shared four lunch sets.  In each courses, there were a few choices to pick from.  I believe, we didn't miss any selections in their lunch menu.  In appetizer section; Fusili, Meatballs, Soup, and the Foie Gras.  Main dishes selection were Kingfish, Duck, Lamb.  Dessert choices were an ice-cream with layer cake and an ice-cream with cupcake.  After we chose our courses, the complimentary bread was served.  We all agree that the bread here is one of the best; served warm gave the soothing aroma, thin and crisp outer layer, and so soft. 

Honestly, all appetizers appeared so fancy, the delicacy presentation was impressive and mouthwatering.  But, they weren't as great as they looked.  Well, except for the Foie Gras with Spring Mix; good stuff.  As I squash foie gras, its soft texture pretty much melted to compliment the fresh spring.  Natural beauty of French cuisine is usually too mild for the Thai palates.  Though we thought that these authentic modern French dishes were quite a delicacy but so bland.  

All main course dishes arrived together.  Firstly, the King fish; it had crispy skin with great firm inner fish texture and the seasoned potatoes side was in fact subtle and tasty.  Secondly, the Duck; this one may not be the best one.  Cous cous rice was a simple side featuring with innards stuffing, the duck became more interest though it seemed to lack a good flavor.  Thirdly, the Lamb; two pieces of a perfectly grilled to about medium rare.  This choice was definitely the best one even if the sauce lacked tastiness.  Since we had four lunch sets, we had two of this Lamb dish.  

As far as I know, Le Vendome's lunch courses will be different every week.  So, you might not find the same selection as I did.  For the price of 380 Baht we had quite a lunch.  I thought it was worthwhile.  I enjoyed the overall atmosphere; beautiful interior space plus the garden view.  And the service staffs were very polite and attentive, properly trained to a very formal service style.  I assumed this place attract some Japanese crowd since there were some Japanese flyers at the entrance.  And on this visit, two other parties were Japanese people.  They must like the mild taste of French specialties.  I wonder if their a la carte are better.  If any of you are in the Sukhumvit 31 area and have chance to stop by Le Vendome Authentic Modern French Restaurant for dinner, please share your thoughts.  I would really appreciate it. 

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