Samui Wining & Dining
Seafood Palate restaurant wows with its tasty Italian and Thai dishes.

Seafood Palate restaurant wows with its tasty Italian and Thai dishes. The vitality that’s gone into this chic Lamai restaurant is impressive: at once cool and laid-back, it honours the hot, hot tropical feel of the island with its choice of open-air decking or relaxed air-con dining room. The food tastes every bit as good as it looks, and is extremely well-priced. Oh, and portions are on the big side, making Seafood Palate, one of those places where people come back to time and time again.


The restaurant is part of Pavilion Samui Boutique Resort, just over the road, a resort that’s one of Lamai’s favourites. Most people aren’t aware of this as Seafood Palate acts as a stand-alone restaurant, with many of its guests walking in from the beach road while they’re out for a stroll.


Seafood Palate is housed in a very contemporary style building, with a kitchen that’s right on the street, so you can see all that’s going on - a deliberate choice, of course, allowing the cooks to put on live demonstrations. You’ll see plenty of seafood on display outside, and you can be sure it’s totally fresh. Khun Wasan, who’s in charge of the daily running of the restaurant says,“We purchase our fish fresh from the markets, and we do this daily. For most fish, we go to Lamai market, but for some we also go to Plai Laem market, up beyond Chaweng. Our priority is that it’s all top quality.”


Khun Wasan describes the food as authentic Thai and Italian. So there is a duo of cuisines in play, along with a few fusion dishes here and there. No matter what you opt to eat, you’ll find great professionalism both in the presentation and the cooking.Seafood Palate restaurant wows with its tasty Italian and Thai dishes. The menu starts with a page devoted to the chef’s recommendations; it features both Thai and Italian dishes, and gives an initial idea of what kind of food you can expect at Seafood Palate. A favourite is the tod man pla krai, or deepfried fish cakes, with river fish from Bangkok being used. It’s a delicious way to start a meal here. Lobster in sweet and sour sauce is also on the recommendations page, along with spicy sea bass in a lime sauce, Thai beef salad, and curried crab.


Being a seafood restaurant, there’s naturally a large choice of fish to be had. You’ll find the prawn dishes are extremely popular. There’s a whole page in the dinner menu just focussing on these; you can have them deep-fried with tamarind sauce, baked with herbs and served with glass noodles, or sautéed with asparagus or broccoli – and these are just a few of the possibilities.


As befits any good Italian restaurant there’s plenty of pasta, fettuccini, fusilli, spaghetti and penne on the menu – try the colourful Sicilian fusilli or the home-made fettuccini with salmon cream sauce. For the spaghetti, you’ll find more than the usual suspects. For something completely unexpected, just order the spaghetti tom yum goong – it’s perfectly made and just proves that spaghetti and Thai food can go extraordinarily well together. There are also several kinds of pizza, all of which are beautifully made in the wood-fired pizza oven at the front of the restaurant. And just because this is a seafood restaurant it doesn’t mean to say that meats have been forgotten. You can enjoy grilled New Zealand tenderloin steak with pepper sauce or saltimbocca with spinach, mashed potato and white wine sauce.


Seafood Palate also stocks a range of wines that have been selected to complement the food. These hail from France, Australia, California and South Africa. If you’re in any doubt what to choose, just ask the staff, who are very knowledgeable and will be able to guide you. As with the food, the wines won’t be a drain on your bank account, as they’re very well-priced and value for money.


The restaurant’s open from 11:00 am until 11:00 pm, so if you’d like to come for lunch, you’ll be equally welcome. You can choose lunch from the dinner menu, but most people, says Khun Wasan, opt for something from the special lunchtime menu, which is simply called Easy Lunch, and features, again, Thai and Italian treats. There are salads, burgers, pizzas and pasta, and on the Thai side noodle and rice dishes as well as Thai mains, served on rice.


Come even earlier and you’ll find a coffee shop open. It’s part of Seafood Palate and is open from 9:00 am until 9:00 pm. it’s great for all-day breakfasts, both Thai and international, as well as coffee, tea and baked goods and cakes from the restaurant’s own bakery. Very popular in its own right, you can come and relax here and take your time. Naturally, as with the restaurant, you can enjoy free Wi-Fi and catch up with what’s happening in the world outside.


Desserts come as decadent as you could ever wish for, all lusciousness and melt-on-the-tongue flavours. Try the mille-feuille with fruits of the forest, topped with maraschino sauce or chocolate mousse with vanilla sauce, or the ever-popular tiramisu, made traditionally here, and including Kahlua sauce. All the desserts look great and have no doubt inspired a few hundred Instagram and Facebook postings since the restaurant first opened its doors some two years ago.


With so much choice, reasonable prices and great-tasting food and drink, many diners are making a beeline for Seafood Palate, knowing that they are in good hands!


 Dimitri Waring


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