A friend of ours was telling us that he goes to a French restaurant that is really good. We always like to hear those words...'a new & good restaurant'. Since he knew the owners and was familiar with this restaurant, we decided to go with him to the restaurant which is called 'Fat Fish'.
Our friend told us that Fat Fish is the idea of two lady friends. One is the chef and one is running the room (don't quote me on this, I probably got the history of Fat Fish wrong).
Fat Fish is situated in the old restaurant called Chapter 31, which by the way has just moved to the building right next door (I really mean right next door). The design is almost industrial like; with exposed wood, stone, concrete & very large glass front windows. The only problem was the air-conditioning was not placed well and it was blowing right on our heads. We had to ask the waiter to turn it down or off.
The decor is very nice. Simply decorated with small framed paintings on a stone wall. The lighting is perfectly set, giving the restaurant a warm glow & a good ambiance. The table setting is simple but of good quality.
The basket of bread and toppings for the bread. The store bought bread was of mediocre quality, but at least it came toasted & warm. The side toppings was a nice touch.
The first appetizer was chicken liver pâté. The pâté was fine, smooth & creamy. It had a good taste but it was lacking some uummhhh to it...not sure, but it could have needed more cognac or salt or something.
The second appetizer was deep fried calamari with sun-dried tomato coulis & tartare sauce. The calamari rings were deep fried to a light golden brown. The dish was presented nicely. However; the calamari rings were not crispy (probably the oil was not hot enough) and the squid was chewy (either bad quality or not fresh). Very disappointing since I am a sucker for any fried food.
The third appetizer was tuna tartare. The best of all the appetizers we ordered. The tuna was very nicely presented, the tuna was very fresh & hand chopped into chunks. For added zing to the dish, the sauce that melded the tuna together was very spicy (very nice touch).
The first main dish was rib-eye steak with gratin dauphinois (this dish normally comes with french fries but our friend replaced them with the gratin). The steak was cooked as ordered (medium-rare but closer to rare). The steak was of good quality and had a good taste. The gratin was creamy, rich & hearty.
We did keep the order of french fries that originally came with this dish. The portion of french fries was huge (a good thing); the french fries had good colour & texture. But to our horror, the french fries tasted like calamari. Fat Fish did a no no. They deep fried the potatoes in the same oil as the calamari (not a good thing).
The second main dish was sole with roasted mushrooms & potatoes. The sole was the fish of the day & highly recommended. It was a bad idea! The fish was fresh but still disappointing because it was bland, slightly over cooked and the portion sadly small. Too bad because we do like sole.
The third main dish was braised ox-cheeks in port & red wine with potato purée & crispy leeks. This was the best main dish from all of our orders. The ox-cheeks were very tender & juicy. The spring vegetables were still slightly crunchy (I like that) and the port & red wine sauce was rich & tasty.
The cheese platter was very sad! One cheese had the taste of plastic (I am sure it wrapped in plastic before we ordered it), one was too old and one was bland. If a restaurant is going to have a cheese platter; they should at least try to do it some what well. Offer only one or two cheeses but offer the best. We would rather have a limited selection that is good instead of a big selection that is awful. There was no heart & soul into it. They might as well not offer a cheese platter and focus on the desserts instead.
Overall; we were disappointed (but we did not tell our friend). Perhaps, we were expecting too much. The restaurant's physical attributes are nice, comfortable, easy-going and well put together. The prices are very reasonable and the staff were friendly & efficient. The disappointing part was the menu. Fat Fish is supposedly a 'Seafood Bistro'; but the seafood dishes we ordered were not good. We actually thought the meat dishes were better.
I have read a couple of 'fantastic' reviews about Fat Fish. So, I am wondering to myself, did Fat Fish have a bad night? Am I being too harsh? Do, I really know about food? Am I the only one who thinks this way? I don't think I will give up on Fat Fish. We might give it another try to see if I really know what I am talking about.
Sukhumvit soi 31