Food Review: Kinnari Thai Cuisine At Joo Chiat | Under-The-Radar Thai Restaurant In The East With Delicious Dishes
The Place I have walked past it many times previously and I finally made a reservation at Kinnari Thai Cuisine, a casual family run Thai restaurant along Joo Chiat Road just a few doors down from Common Man Coffee Roasters Joo Chiat. It is interesting that Kinnari Thai Cuisine has relatively little mention online given its location, and despite so, the restaurant is usually fully packed.
The interior of Kinnari is a no-frills casual set up, split into two main dining areas fit for small and big groups. Wooden tables, green walls, and it would not be out of place even in Bangkok. I was excited to peruse the menu.
The Food The menu is extensive and prices are relatively wallet-friendly. I also appreciate that there are different portions to choose from for some of the dishes, which help cater to different group sizes.
I started with the Tom Kar Chicken (S$13/small), a small soup of coconut milk, lemongrass and mushrooms which is mildly spicy. Delicious flavour and yet the coconut element is not too cloying.
I love Green Curry Chicken (S$15/small), so this dish naturally made it to the table. Rich aromatic curry here, along with small cubes of tender chicken in a mildly spicy sauce.
The Steamed Sea Bass with Spicy Lemon Sauce (S$25/Fillet) stays true to names as the sauce is quite spicy. That said, I really like the zesty sauce from the lemon, which goes really well with rice as well. Sea bass is soft and fresh!
For carbs, try the Claypot Vermicelli with Prawns (S$22) where the number of prawns served is generous. The texture of the vermicelli is moist along with a flavourful taste, which makes it a hearty dish to share after some white rice.
I was probably missing Thailand too much, hence I had the Omelette Crab Meat (S$15). You get little chunks of crab meat hidden in the omelette, nothing too mind-blowing here, just comforting flavours. And who doesn’t like eggs?
Rants Service was generally quite cold from my dining experience. I would expect more pride in service for a family run restaurant business.
Will I Return Again? This is my new go to place for Thai food in the east. The dishes are generally very good, and there is a good variety on the menu. Can’t wait to return!
Taste bud: 4/5
Hole in the pocket: 3.5/5
Overall Experience: 4/5
Kinnari Thai Cuisine
201 Joo Chiat Road
Tel: +65 9328 2928
Tuesday to Sunday: 11:30am to 3:00pm; 5:00pm to 8:30pm
Closed on Mondays
Ranted by The Ranter
I came to this restaurant after a lapse of 1 year or so. I must say a few things disappointed me: 1) I made a reservation for 745pm on a Friday night. Guess what, the last order was at 8pm and the restaurant closes at 9pm. I had a guest from overseas who was yearning for good Thai food and having been here previously, and experienced good food though service at that time was quite pathetic. This time the service staff were better. Food wise was only ok. The biggest disappointment was the Masaman Beef curry which tasted more like Beef curry than anything remotely Thai. The beef was fatty. Total letdown. The mango and sticky rice dessert was excellent as the rice had a pandan flavour to it. At 9pm, had to take my guest elsewhere to continue with our catch-up. Don’t think I will be coming back here again which is a shame because it was good the first time around.
That’s sad to hear! We have not tried the beef curry before, though the rest of the dishes we had so far are quite satisfying. Service is a hit and miss here for us.