Bangkok has reached hot and arid summer season which could be easily cured with a sour and spicy packed flavor of Thai north-eastern (Isaan) cuisine. I already had a reservation at 100 Mahaseth before Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants expected revealed on Thursday, 25th March 2021 from 4.30pm (HK/Sing). Alongside Kyoto’s legendary Soba restaurant since 1465 Honke Owariya, 100 Mahaseth has been nominated as root-to-fruit, nose-to-tail and farm-to-table restaurant with 100 Smile Meals initiative to help farmers and suppliers during the pandemic.
100 Mahaseth are packed around lunchtime, the staff informed me that all guest have an advance booking so make sure to reserve before visiting. The ambiance seems to be rustic and simple with an imitation of Isaan vibe. Overall atmosphere seems to be a bit more relaxed than normal fine dining vibe.
Starting with a complimentary starters, crispy pork rind served with fresh vegetables and herbs. Accompanied with Thai Chimichurri, Jaew (Chili sauce with tamarind juice) and Jeaw Pla-ra with moderate spiciness.
Pineapple and Blood Cockle – A Spicy salad of pineapple and blood cockle with Pla-ra (Thai fermented fish sauce)
Blood cockle are famous for their metallic flavor and excessive blood when cooked which I try to stay away from as far as possible. In this particular case, the presentation was well-executed. Combination of sweet and sourness from pineapple with blood cockle and crunchiness from peanuts does blend together.
Som Tam Kai Yang – Marinated grilled chicken with papaya compressed in a seasoned fermented fish sauce with lime and chili
You think you have seen every form of Som Tam? A break from expected Somtum image we normally found in Thailand. Chicken are juicy and the seasoning does blend well too. I wish it would be stronger in the sour and spicy taste though.
Bone Marrow – Bone marrow roasted and buried in charcoal served with toasted perilla seeds, scallion, palm sugar, lime and lemongrass
Bone marrow have a fatty gelatinous texture which felt like a oily custard. One combination bite with toasted perilla seeds felt like a light herbal yummy treat. For the wow factors, this menu definitely got it and majority of the tables ordered Bone marrow.
Grilled sticky rice patties – Sticky rice from Khonkaen rolled into patties glazed with eggs and grilled
A gorgeous presentation of sticky rice apart from our common sight. Be wary of fermented fish on top though since it was extremely salty.
Grilled Braised Ox Tongue – Served with dry Bittergound relish
A generous portion of Ox tongue with a tender texture. Bittergound would be each individual preference due to their strong bitter flavor. Still a strong recommendation as simple and satisfying pick.
Grilled pork Chitlins (Sai-On Yang)
Simple and odorless with a enjoyable chewiness texture
Green Mango Sorbet – served with Naam Plawaan sugar shards with salt and chili marshmallow
Emulating simple green mango with Thai’s snack Naam Plawaan (Sweet fermented fish sauce). Green Mango Sorbet are balanced in sourness and sweetness supported by solidified Naam Plawaan just gave a new twist. Chili marshmallow resides more on a salty side which I would not mind have a full bag as a snack.
Coconut ice cream – in a brioche bun served with sticky rice and roasted peanuts
Packed with creamy and satisfying coconut milk flavor and shred golden thread which was originated from Portuguese Fios de ovos.
In conclusion, 100 Mahaseth offer a lot of twist to Isaan food which still retains enjoyable original taste. The staff are very friendly and informative yet a little bit overwhelmed with full table capacity though. I could see myself revisit this place again in the future.
What is your favorite Thai restaurant around you areas? Please feel free to share your favorite dishes and story.