Tamarind Hill has quickly become one of my favourite places to head to for Thai fine dining, the other 2 being good ol' Patara, and popular CBD haunt Sabai on the Bay. Here, classic Thai food is made exquisite with premium, ultra fresh ingredients and gorgeous plating.
The Hors d'oeuvres comprised a duo of springy Thai Fish Cakes with a refreshingly crisp cucumber salad, a tender chicken skewer burnished with a chili peanut coat, and a papaya salad speckled with salted eggs. The fish cakes and chicken skewer were lovely, but the hightlight was the salad, a myriad of crunchy and smooth textures and addicting in its piquancy.
A classic Thai salad, Lab Gai ($18), was a hodgepodge of minced chicken, fresh shallots, and assorted Thai herbs dressed in a savoury spicy marinade. It was just too bad (for me, at least) copious amounts of coriander leaves were weaved into this.
A must-try, the E-Sarn Style Beef Soup ($8) was smashing. The beef was meltingly tender, and the soup was a perfect hit of the sour and spicy.
The Deep Fried Tofu with Kaffir Lime Salt ($15) was subtly glazed with a sour tinge, and grounded with a thick sweet peanut sauce.
The Deep Fried Butter Tiger Prawns ($47), wispy with butter strands, was spiked with hot basil and chilli nubbins. A most excellent seafood option.
The Deep Fried Grouper in Tamarind ($40), enlivened with pineapple sauce, was equal parts spicy, sweet, and sour.
A must-try, the Steamed Seabass with Thai Herbs ($59) was punched up with lime, garlic, and bird's eye chilli, which drew focus to the freshness of the fish.
The Stir Fried Chicken with Pineapple & Cashews ($34) was a safe, if a little stodgy, option.
The Roasted Duck Breast in Red Curry ($34), sumptuous and creamy, was peppered with grapes, cherry tomatoes, and lychee for a fruity finish.
Obligatory greens were served by way of Stir Fried Asparagus ($19) in oyster sauce, was beautifully nutty and dappled in golden bits of garlic.
For those who can't eat curries without their rice, Tamarind Hill serves up a whopping 10 varietals of rice for accompaniment, and a worthwhile option, was the Chilli & Mortar Roasted Rice ($12). Imbued with a smoky essence, this was good to eat on its own.
The Thai Boat Noodles ($10), studded with beef chunks, was so-so. The beef was disappointingly lackluster, but the broth, an intoxicating mix of chilli spices and beef stock, was superb.
Tamarind Hill Restaurant
30 Labrador Villa Road
Open daily from 12noon to 3pm for lunch; 6.30pm to 10.30pm for dinner
Tel: 6278 6364