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Monday, July 16, 2012

Sornthong Pochana Seafood - Rama IV, Bangkok

Sornthong Pochana Seafood Restaurant - Rama IV, Bangkok

Overall Score  9.5/10
Taste   5/5
Ambiance  1/5
Service  3/5
Value   5/5

Sornthong Seafood - Chinese Restaurant on BumRes.com

The Sornthong Pochana is a well known restaurant that I have heard about for quite some time.  I finally get to try it out.  The place has no parking so you go park at the Big C Extra in Soi coming through the Sukhumvit 26 and walk toward the Lumpini park for about 100 – 200m and you will find the Sornthong Pochana.  I heard that this place is where the Channel 3 people like to come for seafood (being near the Channel 3 building).  I got there about 7pm on Sunday.  I knew that the place was going to be busy but I never thought that it was going to be like a mob around.  Man! The Sornthong Pochana really must have some tricks up the sleeves.  We were so determined to eat there that night.  We waited there for over an hour.  I assume that they don’t accept reservation because I didn’t see anyone that didn’t have to wait for a table.  I was so surprised to see that Sornthong Pochana is popular among the expats and tourists.  Only about half of customers were Thais and the rest was Asians. 

I only gave points for the atmosphere of Sornthong Seafood only 1/5.  I was with my family, a party of three.  We had waited for over an hour but we were seated in a round table with two Korean girls.  Well, we managed to get through the meal.  The restaurant was way too crowded and hot.  Atmosphere was awfully hectic just like any typical Chinese restaurant.  Let’s move on to talk about the food.  They had all the regular seafood; shrimp, clams, crab, squid, and other meat choices.  What stunned me the most was the price, since I have read reviews about this place and someone said that it was pricey.  I thought it would be pricey like the Gai Thong at Muang Thong Thani.  In fact, it was reasonably priced and leaning toward cheap.  Please see details in the tab menu as usual.   

We didn’t order too much food since I was with my parents.  First dish was the Pork Satay.  I heard that it was a recommended menu.  Pork satay was 100 baht for 10 skewers.  For the size of the meat on the skewer, it isn’t that bad.  For such a simple menu, the taste was absolutely amazing.  The menu was well deserved to be in the recommendation.  It had a little bit of fat and deliciously marinated to make it perfectly tender.  To enjoy the satay with the peanut sauce and follow with the cucumber salad, it was such a pleasurable appetizer. 

Second dish was the Baked goose web with noodle (380 baht).  The portion was more than satisfying.  There were a lot of egg noodles and it was really good.  The noodles had just the right texture.  Overall taste was amazing; made up of the sauce, pork belly, and the herbs baked inside the pot.  But, the goose web wasn’t as remarkable as the noodles.  Third dish was the fried oysters with egg (150 baht).  The Sornthong used the cabbage instead of the bean sprouts like other Chinese restaurants.  This menu is called Or-suan; it turned out pretty good in its own way.   

The fourth dish was the Grouper fish head with sour prune soup (180 baht).  A friend of mine recommended this one.  I thought it would be overly sour but not really; it was perfectly flavored.  I tasted slight tangy along with all the soy and sweet broth.  The Sornthong added lots of ginger and mushroom that brought a strong herbal aroma.  I liked that.  Btw, we got two grouper heads in the order.  Last one was the Steamed snowfish in soy sauce (450 baht).  We didn’t look at the price of this menu when we ordered.  My parents thought it would be around 800 baht when they saw it on the table.  The fillet was huge; I wouldn’t be able to buy this size for 450 baht at any supermarkets.  The snowfish tasted great, soft texture and really savory with the broth.  It was frustrating that I was almost full by the time this menu came and I was running out of rice.  This menu was best with steamed rice. 

The Sornthong Seafood impressed me with their skillful culinary experience.  I am not surprised that guests from other countries come to eat here.  It was indeed, good and cheap.  This kind of restaurant is rarely found.  However, they need to work on the service, clean up some messy work station, and possibly look for expansion.  Forget what I just said – I just realize that Sornthong has a classic character that all Chinese restaurants in Bangkok share.     

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