Food Review: Baan Tepa Culinary Space, Bangkok | One Michelin Star Restaurant In A Historic House By Chef Tam
The Place One of the fine dining Bangkok restaurants on my list other than Sorn, I finally managed to secure a reservation at Baan Tepa Culinary Space, a One Michelin Star restaurant in Bangkok. The contemporary Thai restaurant is housed in a historic house built in the 1980s owned by Chef Tam Chudaree Debhakam’s grandmother, Lady Suwaree Debhakam, where it is a home that has been in the family for three generations.
The house compound has now been converted into an urban food space with three key sections; Tepa Kitchen, Tepa Garden and house itself.
My table was at the main dining hall, which is an open space where you can catch a glimpse of the open kitchen. My first impression is how well-preserved the house is, which was renovated as it is now converted into a restaurant space. There is still that beautiful classic teakwood staircase which leads to the second floor, a space designated for private functions. That said, you could get a good view of the main dining hall and kitchen from the second floor. There are also private rooms for bigger dining groups at the Garden Wing.
The Food The menu at Baan Tepa changes seasonally and it offers 6 or 9 courses consisting of local and regional ingredients – the Introduction 6 courses at THB3,900, and the Full Experience 9 courses at THB4,500. The team, led by Chef Tam Chudaree Debhakam works, designs and cooks by the philosophy of sustainability.
I had the Full Experience Menu and the meal started with a series of Amuse Bouche dishes such as Lotus seed purée and Crispy waffle with coriander and chilli powder.
Part of my Amuse bouche is a tea and tempura pairing, where the tea infused with herbs acts like a welcome drink for all guests to the house. It is served with a crispy vegetable tempura.
Heart Of Thailand: Nam Prick
North: Tamarillo sorbet, northern tomato relish, pork cracking
Central: Lon miso, preserved fish, charcoal tartlet
South: Kao kwai Namprick, kapi, cumin aioli, pork bacon, cumin leaves tempura
A series of starters before the first course, the charcoal tartlet is my favourite.
The first course proper is a Giant Trevally Fish with Shiitake mushrooms, mushroom stock and omm herbs. The thinly sliced fish beneath the mushrooms has a sashimi-like fresh flavour, and I also want to highlight the delicious sauce here.
Crab Crab Crab!
A series of crabs done different ways, I first had the Crab Chawanmushi, followed by a beautifully glazed deep-fried soft shell crab from Southern Thailand which is glazed with crab jam from Northern Thailand. I really appreciate restaurants like Baan Tepa or Sorn which uses local Thai ingredients where possible to showcase in each of their dishes. Fermented bamboo aioli with yellow curry and ‘nampoo’ is served by the side of the soft shell crab.
This course comes with Chicken liver mousse, jael gel, toasted rice, “Santol Jam” served with ‘samerng’ sticky rice brioche. I love the chicken liver mousse which acts as a spread for the brioche, a unique sticky rice flavour which is such a classic Thai dessert element.
Black Squid Ink ‘Dong Dang’ Noodles
An interesting take on squid ink where the squid ink is infused in the noodles and also as the sauce for the noodles. The noodles has a texture very similar to Korean Tteokbokki, as it is made from Thai rice. The sauce also has a tinge of spiciness as it is infused with lemongrass, which lends an aromatic touch to the delicious noodles.
Cambodian River Prawn Tom Yum
You get fresh river prawns in a clear, mildly spicy tom yum soup, along with a separate serving of rice cooked in prawn stock, prawn fat emulsion and pickled garlic. There are also condiments such as Kaffir lime powder and fish sauce to add to the rice.
Khao Tom Haeng
This is a flavourful rice with abalone, clam, abalone liver sauce and topped with onion tempura. It reminds me of Singaporean-style glutinous rice, but a much more flavourful version from the liver sauce here. It is served with an accompanying broth which helps to balance the rice.
Tawee Farm Pork
Moving on the mains, this dish uses local Thai pork collar along with picked vegetables. It is a tender and delicious slice of pork drizzled with some pork jus, served with some sides to balance the heavy flavour of the pork – a trio of Banana salad, Mulberry gel and Grilled wingbeans.
The last savoury course showcases Karim’s farm lamb with Garee curry roti and Ajard (pickled condiments). There are two parts of lamb here, lamb collar and lamb saddle which are both not overly gamy.
For me, I really like the crispy roti which is perfect to scoop up the curry sauce.
A pre dessert, this refreshing dish spots a tart shell made of cucumber and is topped with cucumber sorbet along with melon icing. It is quite a brain freeze moment which instantly wakes the senses up.
Jack Jack Jack
I was not too excited when I saw jackfruit, but this turned out to be a pleasant surprise. The Thai chocolate miso tart is an intense chocolate flavour profile, where it oozes like a beautiful lava cake as I cracked the tart. It is topped with bits of jackfruit seed biscuit and jackfruit ice cream, where the jackfruit taste is surprisingly mild. Overall, a very interesting paring of jackfruit and chocolate which coexist harmoniously on the palate.
Last but not least, a series of Petit Fours to conclude my dinner, where my favourite is the Sticky rice cake financier.
Rants Nothing in particular.
Will I Return Again? An interesting glimpse into Thai fine-doing, I like how local ingredients are used to showcase each dish and there is also an injection of other cuisines into the menu such that it is not just the traditional Thai flavours being presented. The dining ambience is homely and if you want to experience a fine Thai meal, Baan Tepa is one restaurant I will recommend.
Taste bud: 4/5
Hole in the pocket: 4/5
Overall Experience: 4/5
Baan Tepa Culinary Space
561 Ramkhamhaeng Road, Hua Mak, Bang Kapi District, Bangkok 10240, Thailand
Tel: +66 98 696 9074
Wednesday to Sunday: 6pm to 11pm
Closed on Monday & Tuesday
Ranted by The Ranter