Saenkham Terrace has been consistently good for at least five years. The food, service and presentation were all very good. There were 19 people and they all seemed to enjoy it although two couples said that their trout was cremated. It was a very nice evening and we all enjoyed ourselves.
Photos from our last outing at Saenkham Terrace Restaurant by Nop:
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Our next event will be at La Fourchette. This will be on Thursday, November 21, 2013 at 7:00 PM.
This review is from the Chiang Mai Mail January 2011 so please disregard the prices.
162/2 Phra Pokklao Road | Phrasing Subdistrict, Chiang Mai 50200, Thailand
Quality French Cuisine – at very reasonable prices!
Quality French Cuisine – at very reasonable prices!
By Brian Baxter
Chiang Mai, as is soon discovered, is a village pretending to be a city: word travels quicker than an east wind, rumours abound and half-baked opinions and prejudices gain semi-credence within hours. This could be the place where “Chinese whispers’ originated.
Happily, amidst all the chat from people with not enough to occupy their time and minds, there is often good advice to be found and nuggets of truth to be sifted out. That proved to be the case in the constant trickle of reports I heard about the ‘wonderful’, amazing value’, ‘charming’, ‘authentic French’ restaurant which opened a couple of months ago in the heart of the Old City, directly across the street from the Wat Chedi Luang.
People enjoy bearing good news (hence this one-off return to the food column) not least because they recall what happens to messengers of bad tidings.
The buzz got going partly because of the paucity of decent French eating places in Chiang Mai, especially at modest prices. Italian certainly, Japanese increasingly, Thai obviously but French rarely. A second reason was the presence of the avuncular original chef from Le Coq d’Or, all of 32 years ago in the role of ‘conseil generale’. His energetic and handsome son is the chef here, schooled by long experience in classic tradition. The ‘front of house’ role is filled by a vivacious and clever manageress. Between the trio they could charm the birds from the trees but luckily they more productively offer us a welcome dining out experience in a city full of too many second rate – especially farang- restaurants.
It is easy have a satisfying and generous three course meal plus coffee whilst staying below the 500 baht a head range. Remarkable value (even with an over strong baht): long may it last.
On a recent visit, Neil (who kindly took the photographs) and I enjoyed the following: a full bodied vegetable soup (they also offer a pureed version), properly poached eggs Florentine, followed by duck in a brandy sauce and a super fresh trout from the King’s project and desserts of soufflé Grand Marnier and a blackcurrant ice-cream cake with coulis on the side. The main dishes were well garnished with al dente cooked vegetables and a choice of potatoes. Water is served ad lib at no charge.
Now it must be added that we shared a bottle of eminently quaffable French Merlot (720 baht) and followed the meal with a Cointreau and a Cognac, which between them doubled the final bill. On another visit three of us took our own wine (no corkage at present) and even with a tip and coffee each parted with 500 baht for a spectacularly good meal of three courses, including duck with grapes, a spring chicken and giant prawns in a ginger infused sauce (superb). They expect to have Italasia on board to supply a wider range of wines than at present in the next couple of weeks.
The menu is comprehensive rather than extensive. There are some eight or so soups (around 90 baht), including a shrimp bisque and two onion soups , one with garlic and one with Gruyere and a whole range of salads, plus other interesting starters such as Quiche Lorraine and the cheese tart. The main courses offer little for vegetarians but there are many fish dishes and an even greater selection of meat, including steaks and pork, along with duck and chicken. The puddings are a treat all on their own.
I was won over to La Fourchette on a first visit, when a bowl of crispy radishes was offered, along with sea salt, fresh butter and crusty bread, whilst we checked out the menu. Who could ask for more? The restaurant is reasonable spacious and decorated with vibrant paintings. There is a well stocked bar to the rear and seating for around 30 people, including a smoking area on the front terrace. The tables are a trifle on the small side and when they are busy (a couple of party groups, one rather noisy, during one visit) the service can get a little distrait, but never less than attentive. The menu is admirable in its clarity but lacks a Thai translation: a pity.
La Fourchette opens only in the evenings and because of it proximity to ‘walking street’ and the difficulty of parking, they close on Sundays. Hopefully they will build on their early success, rather than try to extend and lower standards. If so this should become one of the very best eating places in the whole City. You will find them directly across from Chedi Luang and about a hundred metres on the left from the end of Walking Street or five hundred metres along from the Three King’s Monument, heading away from the moat. The phone number (essential for bookings) is 089 758 5604 and English, Thai and French are spoken. Bon appétit! (Photos by Neil Robinson).
From “Thai Guide to Chiang Mai”
The menu is extensive, possibly a little over ambitious for a new restaurant, but what makes La Fourchette stand out from the crowd are the prices. If La Fourchette can continue to offer their authentic French dishes at such reasonable prices then they will be assured of a long future. The quality of food is excellent, well worth the fairly long wait, which hopefully will shorten as the staff find their feet.
The owner of La Fourchette is the son of one of the original founders of Le Coq D’or, an upmarket French restaurant in Chiang Mai, so he should know a bit about good French cooking, and he also helps out as the Desert Chef. A small wine list and a good range of coffees are available . One extra bonus, at least for the present, no corkage charge if you bring your own wine.
From Trip Adviser:
Review of La Fourchette
Reviewed October 26, 2012
the food here is excellent. We had the smoked salmon entree which was delicious, the homemade horseradish cream added a nice touch. The duck confit was the best I've ever had and my husbands chicken tarragon was fabulous too. Everything was GREAT!!! The owner was appeciative of our custom and wanted to be sure we were happy. Would definitely go back when next in Chaing Mai.
Visited October 2012