Intercontinental Hotel has recently been renovated along with it, a new restaurant “Grossi trattoria & wine bar” which replaced the old Deli. Located on the ground floor, it could be easily accessed from the footpath in front of the hotel. It could also be accessed from the lobby through a grand staircase, which is one floor above. Walking down the staircase you could see the extra ordinary high ceiling space of the restaurant. It is three storey high with floor to ceiling, frameless curtain wall, overlooking Ploenchit road.
When we reached the bottom of staircase, we were greeted by Luka the manager of the restaurant. He seated us at one of a nicest table. The table is a circular dark wood with a curved shaped sofa surrounding it. The over sized lamp above the table provide quality lighting to see how beautiful the food looks and off course to see my two beautiful companions. Luka recommended an Australian white wine “Moore’s Creek Chardonnay 2007” to start. He guided us through the complicated menu because all the titles are in Italian with small English description. If you know Italian food you know that it has many categories, to name a few Antipasti, Pasta, Pizza, Padelle(cooked on a pan), Nel Forno(roast), La Griglia(grill), Insalata E Contorni, Dolci(dessert).
left: Luka right: Wannasiri Suttinont Publisher of HiClass Magazine
Our first dish began with “Burata, acciughe siciliane” which consists of Italian cow milk cheese, sicilian anchovies with soy bean and endives. It is definitely a rare dish. It could problaby replace the more familiar Mozarella and tomatoes but it is more dedicated and refined. The cheese itselfs has a complex texture: the combination of creamy foam and chewy cheese, with all other ingredients combined made it very interesting. Followed by “Capasante, sanguinaccio, Salmoriglio”: pan seared scallop with blood pudding and mango salsa. The scallop was perfectly cooked. But the pudding is something you either love it or hate it!: blood pudding is pork blood. Not that we Thais are unfamiliar with it, but it is the unfamiliar sent that one either likes it or don’t.
Burata, acciughe siciliane
Capasante, sanguinaccio, Salmoriglio
We could not resist to order the “Spaghetti col granchio”: spaghetti cooked with crab, chilli, extra virgin olive oil and bottarga(cured tuna fish roe). When it came to the table it did not disappoint. Having tuna fish roe, crab meat, riped local cherry tomatoes simply cooked the right way, is light, peppery and tasty, it’s just something any Thais would love. We got a dish, that was off the menu from the chef it was “Fettuccine calaman and sopressa”: fettuccine on tomato sauce with calamari and Italian sausage. The texture of the calamari was really special; it is a bit chewy like it should be but also really tender. We guest it had to be cooked with a high presser pot to get that interesting texture, or it might simply be done by good marination technique.
Spaghetti col granchio
Fettuccine calaman and sopressa
Another surprise by the chef, something we did not order and serving it himself, “Asparagi, Uovo in Camicia, Reggiano(V)”. It is a simple dish, soft egg yolk with melted cheese, bacon, brown butter, black truffle and white asparagus, when it all combines a perfect combination. This could also be a great breakfast. The young rocker chef ( tight jeans, cowboy boots and colorful tattoo ), Jess Barns is the right hand man of “Guy Grossi”, who established many restaurants in Australia including this one which is his first in Bangkok. Jess has been a chef for more than 10 years.
Asparagi, Uovo in Camicia, Reggiano(V)
Before beginning the next dish, Luka again suggested us a red wine from western Australia “Element Shiraz Cabernet”. The first main “Costata di menzo stufata al cioccolato”: braised Angus beef was sherded and pressed into a thick round piece. Then pan seared until the surface is caramelized until almost burnt. What is special about this dish is the variety of textures: a crispy texture on the outside completely contrasted with the silky texture inside. The chocolate sauce may be too sweet. Then came “Abbacchio alla romana” a baby Victorian lamb (3 months old) was roasted with various seasonings and served with bell pepper ratatouille. It looks like stew because it comes with a lot of juice. The lamb was succulent which went along well with the ratatouille.
Costata di menzo stufata al cioccolato
Abbacchio alla romana
For Dolci: “Italian donuts stuffed with Verona chocolate served with strawberry sherbet ice cream”. This dessert may look cheap but the stuffing inside is high quality chocolate which was complimented by deep fried donut, crunch on the outside soft and moist inside. Next dessert is, “Crème brûlée, chocolate sherbet, fresh strawberry, coffee foam and hazel nut powder”. It doesn’t look that appealing but it has all the texture and taste anyone could wish for. As we thought we have already finished this dinner, the rock star came out with “Cantaloupe sherbet with blood orange and Thyme” to wish us farewell and to see we had a good time. If we didn’t he would probably dish out more of his fine creation.
Text/ Photo: Vasin Srivarathanabul
Ground Floor, InterContinental Bangkok
973 Ploenchit road, Patumwan
Bangkok, 10330, Thailand
Phone: +66 (2) 656 0444.
Opening Hours: 11.30 am – 11.00 pm (Daily)