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BKK food courts versus mall chain restaurants

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We are visiting Bangkok for about 2.5 days in December with a kid aged 5. Our kid actually relishes eating mildly spicy Thai dishes, Pad Thai or satays etc. We are planning on staying at the Intercontinental near the Chidlom BTS. Given our extremely short stay, what's the best places to eat great Thai food? We've heard that food courts can be a decent alternative to eating off the streets (which we've heard are the best places to eat!). We noticed several eating options around the Chidlom and Siam BTS stations. Food courts like Eathai @ Central Embassy, Food Loft @ Central Chidlom and food courts in nearby malls like Amarin, Central World, Siam Paragon etc. To add to our confusion, there are also mall based branches of popularly recommended chain restaurants like Kalpapruek, Taling Pling and Somboon Seafood etc.
We have a couple of questions:
1. What would be the best food courts or sit down restaurant branches to eat at in that area (vicinity of Chit Lom and Siam BTS) if we plan on eating about 3 of our meals in the malls?
2. How do those chain restaurant branches (Kalpapruek/Somboon) compare with the mall based food courts (Eathai/Central World etc)?

We wouldn't mind paying a premium or walking a bit more if a particular mall food court or restaurant offered better quality (fresher) Thai food that isn't dumbed down for farangs but we've also heard that a higher price in Bangkok doesn't always mean better quality! We aren't planning to shop much so venturing into the mall would be primarily to sample foods in air conditioned comfort :)

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