As I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, there are times when the subtleties of Japanese cuisine leave you craving something with a little more punch. Punch in this case means colour, spicy flavours and a touch of dynamism. At such times South East Asian food seems the obvious and most hopeful choice.
So it was that when Mullers declared the Roppongi iteration of Krung Siam “some of the best Thai food I’ve had in Tokyo,” I thought I’d take a look. Not being overly keen on Roppongi, however, I decided a visit to the Jiyugaoka branch was in order.
An attractive little place crammed into the 2nd floor of a narrow building, and accessed by narrow stairs after navigating the slightly neon pink shop sign, bicycles and Shiba-ken (breed of Japanese dog favoured by fascist samurai).
The staff did indeed all appear to be of Thai origin, their welcome warm and friendly, although I didn’t enquire as to their favourite colour of t-shirt. The décor was fairly basic, but fun in a faux ethnic Asia kind of way. For the duration of my visit the service was good enough, although drink delivery was a little tardy.
A fairly well packed menu was presented, with plenty of the usual Thai standards, complete with handy little chilli peppers indicating, on a scale of one to five, the spiciness of each dish.
Sticking to the draught beer due to my usual thirst to price ratio concerns, I started the meal with some wonderfully succulent, lightly barbequed chicken served with a salad of lettuce, leaves and sliced red and yellow peppers, complimented by spicy dipping sauce. An excellent, if simple, dish I had no complaints. Decent portion too.
To follow, a raw aubergine salad that was actually far spicier than I would have expected and consisted of red and yellow peppers (again), carrot, cabbage, leaves and fried bacon. Again, excellent. Unfortunately, judging by the blurred photo I have, my aged hands seem to have been at their shakiest at this point in the meal and so I can’t show you this delightful dish.
The pork and greens (what the “greens” were I do not know), looked great on the menu, reminding of Chinese food, and tasted okay. However, the pork was overcooked, and thus dry and a little tough. Disappointing, as this could have been fantastic. Would like to try again, just in case. To provide a basis of comparison with other Thai restaurants I’ve visited I finished the meal with the green curry. Served with boiled rice this was another fairly spicy dish, with decent-sized morsels of somewhat fatty chicken. A little too oily though. Very salty. Indeed, if I have one overarching complaint with Krung Siam it would be that all the food is saltier than need be.
Best in Tokyo? Probably not, but good stuff all the same.
A recent visit found Krung Siam somewhat lacking... Still packed to the gills -- had to wait almost an hour for a table.
The food was still okay, but all three dishes arrived at the same time, within about 3 minutes of ordering them. Surely this can only be achieved with the help of a microwave?