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Friday, April 26, 2013

Ciao Italian Restaurant Review - Monopoly Park, Bangkok

Ciao - Italian Cafe & Wine Boutique at Monopoly Park, Rama III Road, Bangkok




Overall Score  8/10
Taste   3.5/5
Ambiance  4/5
Service  4.5/5
Value   5/5

Ciao - Italian Restaurant and Wine Boutique on BumRes.com (For more pictures and menu)


Ciao! the friendly name for an Italian restaurant.  This place is located at the Monopoly Park, which is supposed to be the community mall for the Industrial park area of the Rama III district.  My definition of the Community mall is a bit different than what the Monopoly park appeared to be.  Normally community mall is a neighborhood mall where people stop after work before they go home.  This one seemed sort of far from residential area.  Well, actually not so far from the Chan road or Rama III.    

The Ciao at Monopoly Park has been in business for a while, same time as the mall, so about more than 3 years.  This is an all Italian restaurant with complete selection of Italian specialties.  Considering the full name, Ciao - Italian Cafe & Wine Boutique,  their wine selection should be more than plenty.  At lunch time, there are two special sets available; 250++ and 190++ Baht.  Both a 3 course set? unbelievable, isn't it? To be honest, I am familiar with the 450++ price (at least) for the Italian restaurant of this grade in the city.  A la carte at dinner time is even cheaper, about 30 - 40% lower than most Italian restaurants.  We can simply say that Italian has become a trendy eat and Italian food is just bluntly overpriced.  Ciao at the Monopoly park is setting a good example.    







In this meal, we ordered a special menus.  One of them was the Pasta Duo (Enjoy two sauces in one dish, pesto sauce with prawn & our special 3 hours slow cooked tomato sauces with mix seafood - 280 Baht.  Looking like a christmas time dish with the red and green color theme.  The contrast between these two sauces was playful.  I preferred the Pesto one, which was rich in flavor with nice basil aroma.  On the other hand, the red sauce that appeared to be more appetizing was actually not as tasty as it looked.  The pasta was perfectly cooked but the sauce should be more intense.  





Prawn Cocktail Pizza (Our homemade pizza base covers with special creamy tomato sauce, prawns and massive of mozzarella cheeses - 300 Baht).  This one was also a special menu, the thin crust Pizza.  For this price, two people can easily get full ordering only this pizza.  The prawns were spreaded out over the pizza evenly.  I would be happy with more mozzarella cheese.  About the thin and crispy crust, I wished it could be really crispy throughout.  

Next up, the Romaine lettuce tossed in Caesar dressing with salmon and bread croutons - 180 Baht.  Fresh Romaine lettuce were covered with the dressing evenly.  I liked how the kitchen mixed the dressing for us, not having to mix up the salad myself.  The taste of this Caesar Salad was standard good; crispy from the bread croutons and savory from the salmon.     





Home-made lasagna with spinach cream sauce and mozzarella cheese - 230 Baht.  This dish wasn't a typical baked spinach with cheese, it had the shrimps in it, which was a wonderful addition.  Outer layer was nicely gratin to golden brown.  Spinach inside was still rich and juicy.  Having the spinach, shrimp, and cheese together was a dream come true.  We loved it.

Pan-seared fillet of sea bass with olive and tomato sauce, served with potato gnocchi - 350 Baht.  This price may sound like an average high priced Italian's in the city but considering the portion, getting two fillets of the sea bass was a good deal.  The topping garnish was just too simple.  






Pasta with sea scallops and pesto sauce - 290 Baht.  Again the pesto sauce by the Ciao at Monopoly Park was delicious.  This one is supposed to be the signature dish.  The sauce is glazed all over the pasta.  Scallops were big and perfectly browned, nicely complimented by the tasty pesto sauce.  Well deserved to be the chef's recommended menu.  



For dessert, we got the Vanilla cream custard with wild berry sauce (90 Baht).  It was a nice surprised to see that this sweet dream cost less than a hundred Baht (Ciao actually has many dessert choices less than 100 Baht).  Many Italian restaurants of this grade are selling dessert around 200 - 300 Baht.  For 90 Baht, the Panna Cotta wasn't cheaply done, it was done to a good standard.  Sour wild berry sauce was an incredible contrast to the Panna Cotta.  We liked it. 

The Ciao at the Monopoly Park can compete with Italian restaurants in Thonglor area easily and the price is much cheaper.  The food was made with good quality, atmosphere was classy, and the customer service was stress-free.  My lunch experience at Ciao was impressive.  I would recommend this Italian restaurant to everyone.  Its location may be a bit out of the city but for people who is in this area, Ciao is an awesome choice, instead of struggle through traffic for Italian restaurants in the metro area.   


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