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Evil Penevil

Under 300 Baht ... And Good!

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On 10/18/2018 at 5:25 AM, Parky said:

79  baht ??  Hi So honey 🍯 trampers 

The Chunky Monkey has raised the price of the "Monkey Madness" items to 89 baht.  I wonder if that will make a difference.

Evil

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I went to Harry's on Soi Diana to see if the 99-baht hamburger with fries was still on offer and to have another of Harry's Swedish dishes.  The hamburger special was available, but a waitress urged me to try the 150-baht pizza special.

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I was surprised because I didn't recall Harry's having pizza on the menu.  But then I noticed the pizza didn't come from Harry's but from Pizeria in the ZIP Lounge and Apartments across the street.

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I abandoned my plans for pyttipanna or biff à la Rydberg and went with the pizza.  I ordered what was called capriccosa (sic) on the card. It lacked two of the toppings that go on a classic pizza capricciosa, but I don't imagine you can put artichoke hearts and anchovies on a 150-baht pizza in Thailand and still make money.  The tomato sauce, cheese, mushrooms and ham were fine by me, though.  I'm not a fan of artichoke hearts on pizza and wouldn't have ordered it if it had been a classic capricciosa.

It was amusing to see the waitress, in the era of cell phones and the Internet, go to the top step of Harry's and yell "pizza!" across the street.  I don't know what sort of arrangement Harry's has with Pizeria, but there's a Swedish angle.  I lived in Stockholm a number of years while married to a Swedish woman and still remember some of variations available in pizzerias there.  One of Pizeria's offerings was called "Svenne's special" and it was topped with pork tenderloin and Bearnaise sauce,  definitely a Swedish touch.  "Kebabpizza" is also a Swedish invention.  It's not on the same level as durian pizza- yes, you can get that in Pattaya- but bizarre enough to have Raffaele Esposito spinning in his grave. 

I got more evidence of a Swedish connection when my pseudo-capricciosa arrived.

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It was accompanied by a small bowl of what's called pizza salad in Sweden. It was introduced by the Italian  chef and restaurateur who opened Sweden's first pizzeria in 1969. He apparently based it on a Croatian cabbage salad.  Chopped cabbage is marinated in vinegar and seasoned with oregano and sometimes caraway.  It usually contains bits of red pepper and carrot as well. Unfortunately, the bowl of salad I got was inedible: way too much vinegar and what tasted more like cumin than caraway.  It resembled pizza salad, but tasted nothing like I remembered it in Stockholm.

The pizza itself was good; not great in my estimation, but good enough for 150 baht.  

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It was a bit sparse with cheese, but had plenty of mushrooms and ham.  The sauce was OK.  The thin crust was good with just the right bottom char and still soft inside.

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Bottom line:  I don't regard pizza as a dinner dish and almost never have it as such.  I consider it a party food or snack, especially  a late-night snack when out drinking.  The pizza I had at Harry's would be fine along those lines.  I have to rate it as good, with the horrible side salad an irrelevancy.

Evil 

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The Hideaway Guest House and Bar on Soi 15 between The Avenue and Soi Buakhao has recently added a Rib Shack.

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A sign at the front of the Hideaway says the hours are 6 p.m. to midnight, but a post by the owner elsewhere on says the dinner menu is available from 5 p.m. to midnight.  The Hideaway also serves breakfast and has snacks like onion rings and chicken nuggets available at other hours.

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As the name indicates,  grilled spare ribs are the focal point of  its menu, which features a limited number of dishes.  That's an admirable approach I wish more Pattaya restaurants would follow.  It's far better to concentrate on a  few dishes consistently done well than a long list of mediocre offerings.  

It's a grill menu with a U.K. rather than U.S. touch, as you won't find Cumberland sausage at many BBQ places in Memphis or Kansas City.

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I wasn't in the mood for spare ribs the night I ate at the Hideaway and had the grilled chicken breast for 175 baht instead.  It came with a choice of French fries or rice and I took rice.

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The chicken breast was moist, tender and had a good charcoal taste.  It wasn't overwhelmed by the BBQ sauce.  The small portion of salad consisted of fresh and crispy ingredients.  I'm not a fan of raw onion on salad, so I pushed it aside. The condiment basket included a bottle of Heinz salad cream and I used it with an extra splash of malt vinegar rather than the thousand island dressing on the plate.

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The Hideaway is a clean and comfortable place to have a meal, a snack or a drink.  Customers can play pool for free and there's a big-screen TV for sports. 

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The service is very friendly.  I had never been to the Hideaway before and the owner greeted me warmly,  then came back and asked if everything was OK once my meal arrived. Two of the waitressed also asked me the same question. That sort of interaction with the customer is sadly lacking in many Pattaya restaurants.

Bottom line:  I'll be back to try the ribs and the Thai daily special.  

Evil

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2 hours ago, Evil Penevil said:

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The Hideaway Guest House and Bar on Soi 15 between The Avenue and Soi Buakhao has recently added a Rib Shack.

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A sign at the front of the Hideaway says the hours are 6 p.m. to midnight, but a post by the owner elsewhere on says the dinner menu is available from 5 p.m. to midnight.  The Hideaway also serves breakfast and has snacks like onion rings and chicken nuggets available at other hours.

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As the name indicates,  grilled spare ribs are the focal point of  its menu, which features a limited number of dishes.  That's an admirable approach I wish more Pattaya restaurants would follow.  It's far better to concentrate on a  few dishes consistently done well than a long list of mediocre offerings.  

It's a grill menu with a U.K. rather than U.S. touch, as you won't find Cumberland sausage at many BBQ places in Memphis or Kansas City.

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I wasn't in the mood for spare ribs the night I ate at the Hideaway and had the grilled chicken breast for 175 baht instead.  It came with a choice of French fries or rice and I took rice.

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The chicken breast was moist, tender and had a good charcoal taste.  It wasn't overwhelmed by the BBQ sauce.  The small portion of salad consisted of fresh and crispy ingredients.  I'm not a fan of raw onion on salad, so I pushed it aside. The condiment basket included a bottle of Heinz salad cream and I used it with an extra splash of malt vinegar rather than the thousand island dressing on the plate.

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The Hideaway is a clean and comfortable place to have a meal, a snack or a drink.  Customers can play pool for free and there's a big-screen TV for sports. 

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The service is very friendly.  I had never been to the Hideaway before and the owner greeted me warmly,  then came back and asked if everything was OK once my meal arrived. Two of the waitressed also asked me the same question. That sort of interaction with the customer is sadly lacking in many Pattaya restaurants.

Bottom line:  I'll be back to try the ribs and the Thai daily special.  

Evil

Never been there , Kev In Thailand has meets there .. that chicken breast looked pretty good ... as an aside I saw a deal in Robin Hood this week..

149 for a Chicken Parmigan is it ? Or maybe hunters chicken .,, anyway you get a free beer normal retail 249 this week only 149 .. sounds like it’s worth a chase up ...

Looked a big portion ...

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Good news for fans of tacos, burritos, quesadillas and other Mexico-inspired food!   Taco Taco Tex-Mex has opened a new restaurant on Soi  9 off Pattaya Klang, not far from its former stall in the Buakhao Night Market on Soi Buakhao.

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The menu has expanded considerably since the food-stall days.  Prices have also risen, but that's understandable considering it's now an air-conditioned, enclosed sit-down eatery with about 20 seats.

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The young woman who owns Taco Taco  is throughly familiar with Mexican and Tex-Mex cooking.  Remember, they aren't the same thing.  Tacos, the restaurant's menu mainstay, are basically street food in Mexico and her tacos are closer to the Mexican original in flavor and form than the U.S. fast-food taco.  The pork and beef in her menu offerings are slow-cooked.  In all the dishes I've tried. she's captured the big, bright flavors of Mexican and Tex Mex in the right proportions.

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The other night I tried the shrimp ceviche tostados at 260 baht.  Small bowls of pineapple salsa and home-made hot sauce (Untitled-2.jpg.862cae2fc0e6749871885910b41f1f71.jpg fiery hot!!!) accompanied the tostadas. 

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Pieces of raw shrimp had been marinated in lime juice, mixed with pico de gallo (diced tomato, onion and chilies with cilantro) and placed on three toasted corn tortillas. Excellent! There was nothing Taco Bell-ish about those tostadas or the sauces.  The pineapple salsa gave a sweet hint and a few drops of the hot sauce (enough for me!) added heat.

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The interior of Taco Taco is clean, functional and well-lit.  As well as its food items, Taco Taco also offers hand-shaken margaritas (120 baht), beer and other beverages.  I've tried the margarita and it's both delicious and strong.

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It was reassuring the walls weren't covered with sombreros, Mexican blankets, pinatas, burros or guitars.  Instead of Frito-Bandito-style symbols, Taco Taco uses painted skulls as a table decoration as well as on its logo and exterior neon sign.  Skulls have been a common motif in Mexican art since Aztec times.

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This has to be the most original restaurant bin I've seen in Thailand.

As a nod to Tex side of its food, Taco Taco has begun with Taco Tuesdays, a U.S. innovation since the 1950s.  It began as a promotion on  a weekday that was slow for a Mexico-inspired restaurant in Texas. and now encompasses many restaurants across the U.S. that sell tacos.

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According to the owner, Taco Tuesdays have already become popular and Tuesday is the busiest day of the week for her. It gives customers the chance to sample a variety of tacos at a discounted price. The above graphic and the first pic in this post come from Taco Taco's Facebook page.  You can see more photos of Taco Taco's food on its FB page.

Taco Taco's hours of operation are; Monday, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.;  Tuesday- Saturday, 12 noon to 10 p.m.; closed Sunday.  Below is a map that pinpoints its location for anyone not familiar with the area.

Bottom line:  Taco Taco is a great option for anyone who enjoys Mexico-inspired street food served on or in a tortilla.  I'll be reporting again from Taco Tuesday.

Evil

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Some decent offers at the Robin Hood Tavern, although I haven't been too impressed by the food on a couple of past visits.

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They may, however,  be a bit optimistic with their Scotch egg promotion.  I wonder if they have been inspired by the story of Robert the Bruce and the spider?  "If at first you don't succeed ..."

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Evil

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I had dinner New Year's Eve with a farang friend and his Thai companion at Calles Bar and Restaurant in the arcade next to Soi Diana.  That arcade, which runs between 2nd Road and Cherry Bar, is something of Pattaya's Restaurant Row.  It's home to Kiss Food, Beefeater, Patrick's, Longhorn Steakhouse, My Way, Little India and a couple of others.

All were very busy.  Every seat was taken at Kiss; Patrick's had a sign up saying it was fully occupied; Beefeater and Longhorn had people waiting for tables. We got the last table available at 8.00 p.m. at Calles.   It hadn't been our first choice, but we we were rewarded with excellent meals.

I had the planked chicken  at 295 baht. Roasting meat or fish on an oak plank is a Scandinavian cooking technique that probably predates Viking times, but was revived in  Sweden in the 20th century.  

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I got a nicely grilled piece of chicken breast flanked on two sides by duchess potatoes, a favorite of mine. It's the nutmeg used as a seasoning as well as butter and egg in the mashed potatoes that does it for me. Duchess potatoes are a classic of French cuisine, supposedly first made for a British duchess on a visit to France.  The asparagus stalk wrapped in bacon and the grilled tomato half are the usual accompaniments to modern Swedish planked dishes. The gravy was OK, but it didn't add much flavor.

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My friend had the dory fillet, which he liked very much.  

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It came with rice, but he could have had potatoes with it and on second thought, wished he had.  I can't remember the exact price, but it was around 350 baht.  

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His girlfriend had the planked salmon at about 425 baht.  That's outside the scope of this thread, but she was happy with it and her margarita.

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 The salmon came with duchess potatoes,  asparagus stalks, grilled tomato half, Hollandaise sauce and a sprig of dill.

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Bottom line:  Good stuff on the menu at Calles, with quite a few items under 300 baht.  All three of us intend to return.

Evil

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(The pic above is from Moon's Facebook page.  I went back after my first visit to take an exterior pic in daylight, but Moon was closed for interior work.  My pics below).

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The Moon Diner has been open in Tree Town for about six weeks and I tried it for dinner a few days  ago with two friends.  Its theme for the menu, decor and background music is an American diner from the 1950's and 1960's. 

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Of course, the Moon Diner has about as much in common with a real U.S. diner as the Siam Garden Restaurant in Norman, Oklahoma would have with any popular Thai restaurant in Pattaya.  But that's beside the point.  From what I've seen in real life and in Facebook pictures, the Moon's customers are by a big margin Thais.  Not farang, certainly not Americans, but Thais who have never gotten closer to the U.S. than a TV or movie screen.  The Moon Diner is playing into what its customers think an American diner should have been like 50 or 60 years ago.

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According to Moon Diner's Facebook page, the direct inspiration is Mel's Drive-In from the iconic 1973 film, American Graffiti.  Mel's was a real restaurant, but outside San Francisco, not in Modesto, CA, the site of American Graffiti.  Actually, Moon is closer in form and spirit to Arnold's Diner in the TV series Happy Days.  The layout with booth and counter seating is typical for some traditional diners in the U.S.

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but what the heck- you can't mistake it's supposed to be American something.  The Moon is covered with every possible American symbol, including three U.S. flags inside and four on the roof! 

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And you have to  love the statue of Marilyn Monroe ...


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as well as the baseball  bat and catcher's mitt on the counter.

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To cut to the chase-the food at Moon is good- not great, but good.  It is expensive for what you get and portions are adequate but not large. The decor and lighting are a bit gaudy, but the background music (rock'n'roll and pop classics from the 1950s and 1960s) was played at a very discreet level.  That's a big plus for me.

I wasn't very hungry the night we ate there and just had a toasted ham and Swiss cheese sandwich for 139 baht.  

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It came on a wooden platter with a fancy presentation and a small order of French fries.  You won't see that too often in a U.S. diner.

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The ham and Swiss cheese were good quality and the balsamic vinegar and tomato foam were nice touches.  I enjoyed the sandwich.

My friend had the chicken schnitzel  at 220 baht. 

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It also came on a wooden platter, this time with fries and a few lettuce leaves with but without much of a presentation.  It was a fairly large piece of chicken breast and he thought it tasted fine.  We both felt the fries- crispy on the outside, fluffy inside- were better than the fries you often get in Pattaya.

His Thai companion was hungry that night and began with an order of buffalo wings ...

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followed by a shrimp cocktail and Thai soup.  

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The shrimp cocktail cost 139 baht and the soup was 89 baht.  I forget how much the buffalo wings were.  She knocked back all of it.  I tasted a bit of a buffalo wing and it was fine, not as spicy as I had expected. My friend had one of the shrimp and said it was very fresh.  That shrimp cocktail did indeed hark back to the style of the 1960s.  

Another afternoon I went back to try the calamari. It was an appetizer-sized portion, but tasted good and had been deep- fried properly.

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The menu at the Moon is fairly extensive, covering a number of U.S. and international bases.  They offer the usual array of farang favorites, including hamburgers, sandwiches, pasta, pizza, pork chops, BBQ ribs and a few Thai dishes.  It also has some American-style ice cream sundaes.  The Moon offers a number of beers and cocktails.

It's located at the northwest end of Tree Town, across from a Thai nightclub that used to be called "Burn."   It could be the management of Moon is counting on business from customers at the nightclub.  Moon's opening hours are 4.30 p.m. to 2.00 a.m. seven days a week.  

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The night were ate there, Moon had more customers inside and outdoors than I had expected.

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Bottom line:  Moon is a fun place to take a Thai girl for a meal as it provides numerous opportunities for the ever-so-important selfies.  The kitschy decor is likely to be a turn-off for some farang, although it will probably prove popular with Russians if they find the place as it's hidden in a back corner of Tree Town.

One curious note:  Moon seems to have some connection with Thai photographers.  Moon's Facebook page features a number of photos of girls taken by various photographers at the diner.  The night we ate there, two Thais with heavy-duty professional camera equipment were sitting at one of the booths, but they weren't taking pics while we were there.

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(The two photos above are from Moon's Facebook page).

Evil

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41 minutes ago, Cat Crumpet said:

Evil is a good boy - we had a moment together  :)

His reports and pics are top notch. Fairly gets about. His bar reviews are great as well. 

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I've finally gotten around to writing up a review of Simon's Hummus Laboratory on Soi Buakhao at the north side of Buakhao Night Market.  It's on the upper level above the SCB branch and next to Amazon Coffee. Whether it's on the first or second floor depends on what country you come from.  😄  It's easy to miss Simon's because there is no eye-catching signage on the ground level. The yellow arrow marks the entrance to Simon's.

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Simon's is an Israeli and Middle Eastern restaurant.  As the name indicates and the Web site proclaims, it is focused on "hummus, hummus and more hummus."  In Israel and at Simon's, hummus has gone beyond an appetizer (meze) or accompaniment for drinks and become The Base for main courses.  

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The mainstay of the menu seems to be hummus platters in numerous variations accompanied by pita bread and small side dishes of cabbage, carrots and hot sauce. I like the classic hummus with falafel and have had it several times.

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It costs 180 baht.

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Hummus itself is boiled, mashed chickpeas, which can be bland.  The addition of olive oil, herbs and spices give it a lot more flavor, as do the side dishes.

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 The portion is large enough for a light lunch or supper.  But if you're looking for a more substantial meal, Simon's doesn't disappoint.  The baked chicken with potatoes is very good at 220 baht.

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There's plenty of chicken and potatoes in a well-seasoned sauce.  It comes with the same side dishes as the hummus platter.

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I don't usually post "after" pics, but one below shows how much I enjoyed my meal.

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Another favorite of mine at Simon's is the shakshuka,  a combination of poached eggs simmered with tomatoes, onions, garlic and spices. It costs 150 baht. There are many variations of shakshuka and at Simon's it comes with cheese melted on the eggs.

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Food historians can't decide if it originated in Turkey, Morocco or Yemen, but it has been adopted as an Israeli staple, eaten for breakfast or dinner.

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It's light and healthy, but filling. I much prefer it over Western fried breakfasts.

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Simon's has many tasty and interesting dishes from Israel and other Middle Eastern countries.  I'll post excerpts from the menu at the end of this review

The decor at Simon's is eclectic to say the least.

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It's clean and well-lit.  I can't remember anything about the background music, so it must have been unobtrusive.

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The service staff and Simon himself are friendly.  Each time  I've eaten there, he's asked me how the food was.

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Bottom line:  The Israeli food at Simon's may be new to a lot of plain-vanilla farang, but don't hesitate to try it.  Simon's is open every day from 10.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m.

Evil

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11 hours ago, Evil Penevil said:

signboard-thank-you-smiley-emoticonam.jpg  for the kind words. They are always appreciated.  

Evil

And deserved.

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says I.  I just read the following on Facebook: 

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I'll try to find out if it's finito or he is just moving to a new location. He has moved several times in the past.

One interesting fact.  I did a Google search on Simon's to see if he has a branch in Bangkok (I believe he does, but not sure).  This came up on the first page of the Google results:

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My review of Simon's had been picked up by the Google spiders or bots.  It makes sense to keep the lowest level open and to make damn sure the other levels aren't.

Evil

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I've had Nueng's pies in the past and they are good, but I fully acknowledge I have limited experience of UK-style meat pies.  She's located on the Darkside and (edit in) delivers to central Pattaya.  All the pics come from Neung's Pies FB page.

 

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Il Peccatore ("The Sinner') is an Italian restaurant that's been open since mid-November on Soi Lengkee, about half way between Soi Buakhao and 3rd Road.  I read that the owner named it Il Peccatore because Pattaya is a city of sinners. 

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It features indoor and outdoor dining areas, with the enclosed area strictly non-smoking.  The indoor area had about 15 diners when I arrived and I didn't want to get intrusive with my camera, so I only took pictures of the bar area.

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I had been meaning to try Il Peccatore for awhile, but  never got around to it until last night.  Il Peccatore posts its daily specials on its Facebook page and yesterday's special really caught my eye: paccheri cacio e pepe.  

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Paccheri is large tubular pasta and cacio e pepe translates as "cheese and pepper."  The cheese is pecorino romano, a very salty type made from sheep's milk.  Cacio e pepe is one of the oldest dishes in Italian cuisine, dating back to shepherds in Roman times. It's a simple dish, consisting of only a few ingredients, namely cheese, pasta and pepper. Modern variations often add extra virgin olive oil to give the sauce a shine.

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Since the 1950s, cacio e pepe has become a staple in Rome's restaurants and has more recently become popular outside Italy.  In 2016, it was named by a New York City magazine as the year's "trendiest dish."  I haven't seen it before on a menu in Pattaya, so I was eager to try it.

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I wasn't disappointed.  The sauce was excellent and coated the fresh pasta as it should. 

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I thought it  could do with a bit more pepper and ground more on the pasta from the miniature pepper mill on the condiment tray.  A basket of fresh bread preceded the pasta.

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After the meal. the waitress offered me a complimentary glass of chilled limoncello as a digestif.  Nice touch!  I really like limoncello

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I was happy with the meal.  The portion wasn't large, but the paccheri was very filling and adequate for me.  Considering the meal was based on fresh pasta and pecorino romano and included bread and limoncello,  I thought it was value for money at 270 baht.  I know there are restaurants where you can get bigger plates of spaghetti for half the price, but a mound of boiled dry pasta with canned sauce  is a long way from paccheri cacio e pepe

The service was fast and friendly. The waitress I had spoke good English, which isn't always the case in Pattaya restaurants. The owner (or perhaps manager) greeted me both on my way in and out.  I didn't study the menu, but there seemed to be a wide range of Italian dishes, including pizza.

I noticed another diner had taken the other special, the grilled T-bone steak for 490 baht, and I almost regretted my decision to go with the pasta.  The steak looked large and thick and the gentleman ate it with gusto.  Il Peccatore's daily specials follow a pattern of fresh pasta dishes under 300 baht and a meat dish (beef, lamb, pork, duck) under 500 baht.  The meat dishes aren't necessarily Italian, such as roast beef with roasted potatoes and T-bone steak.  I'll include some photos of the daily special lists from Il Peccatore's FB page at the end of this post.

From what I overhead of the other guests' table conversation, almost all were Italian. That's a decent comment on the quality of the food.

Bottom line:  I'll definitely go back for another taste of Italy and maybe the steak and roast lamb as well.

Evil

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I'm a big fan of Taco Taco, but I haven't been back too many times since they moved to  Soi 9 off Pattaya Klang, simply because the old location, a stall in the Soi Buakhao night market, was more convenient for me.  

No doubt, though, that the new enclosed, air-conditioned  restaurant is a far more comfortable place to have a meal than a fold-up table in front of the old stall.  The menu has expanded considerably, too.

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I went back yesterday to try the Taco Tuesday special:

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And a tempting pic from Taco Taco's Facebook page:

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The following tacos cost 60 baht each all day Tuesday and you can mix and match as you please:

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You can also choose hard-shell corn tortillas or soft wheat tortillas.  I picked column B and had the conchinita pibil and chicken tinga in corn tortillas and the smoky beef on a wheat tortilla.

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The order came with three in-house-made sauces: the iconic Mexican pico de gallo (aka salsa fresca or salsa mexicana); habanero chili hot sauce (fiery hot 16 - Copy.jpg ) and pineapple salsa.

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The pork, chicken and beef in the tacos had been slow-cooked with Mexican spices.  The cook didn't skimp on the chili content and the chicken tinga and smoky beef had quite a kick without the hot sauce.  The conchinita pibil was a bit milder with a sweet-sour flavor to the pork.  It's based on a traditional pork dish from the Yucatán Peninsula and is a favorite of mine.  I hope Taco Taco spins off conchinita pibil into a main dish and not just a taco filling.

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The meal cost 180 baht for the three tortillas and 20 baht for a bottle of water.

Bottom line:    Since Dave's Cantina closed, these are the best tacos in Pattaya.  They aren't the biggest, but definitely the best tasting.  Some other taco variations on offer on the regular menu.

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Taco Taco also has weekly specials and this week it's three-bean chili con carne with rice and nachos:Untitled-1.jpg

Evil

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