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Harmonique , SupperBed, and China House?

Harmonique , SupperBed, and China House?

Old Jan 29th, 2006, 08:23 AM
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Harmonique , SupperBed, and China House?

Several months ago many fellow travelers raved about Harmonique, BedSupper Club (name may not be exact) and the China House but lately little mention of them. Is this just coincidence or has chef and/or ownership changed in them since the Fall?We are staying at the Penn and plan 1 dinner at their gourmet restuarant or is Jesters better? Since we will eat there likely on our arrival ,about 7PM Bangkok time coming from US we will not want a heavy meal. But, even at a gourmet resturant we could order 2 appetizers and 2 salads and get to bed.
At China House is there 1 dish other than the Peking Duck that is a MUST HAVE to compliment the duck? How much is a duck for 2 persons?
Also, has anyone brought their own wine to these 3 places and paid a $10-$15USD corkage charge which is acceptable to us?
We see $50USD with service charge in Thailand a resonable price at the best restaurants and $30 at very good local places. Do those amounts make sense? Thanks.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 08:49 AM
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All the food at China House is superb. The Peking Duck is a lot of food for two people. You might get an appetizer to start and their fried rice is the best I've ever had (no yucky brown sauce-- very light and tasty). I paid a corkage charge there last time -- no problem. The Peking Duck is about $27 total so about $14 per person. To my mind the best value and best meal in bangkok. This is my favorite restaurant.

Bed Supper Club is around $27 per person and I don't think you can bring your own wine. Wine is very expensive there.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 09:03 AM
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Stan, I absolutely agree with Gloria that the Peking Duck at the China House is superb. We haad the Peking Duck with a pearl jasmine tea and shared the Fresh Mango pudding for dessert. Our total bill was US$44. Personally, I couldn't eat more than that. A light appetiser would have been out of the question.

If I were you, I'd email Bed Supperclub about whether they allow you to bring your own wine. We ordered wine there with our meal and our total bill was $88.85 The wine was ok, not fabulous. The food at Bed was very good. It's billed as "fusion" but I'd call it Western.

Harmonique is in no way in the same league as the others. It's an interesting little spot for a lunch. It's renowned for it's inattentive service (really!). The food is good, a mix of Thai and Chinese. It's quite cheap. You wouldn't bring a bottle of wine here!

Lots of peple like Jesters at the Pen. Someone recently had a bad review of the Thai restaurant at the Pen. I'm not sure what you mean by the Pen's "gourmet restaurant"

If you want another restaurnat siggestion for a lovely dinner, I'd suggest Mahanaga. It's called Thai fusion, but the food I ordered was Thai. The decor is lovely.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 09:48 AM
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If you have a light, continental breakfast and skip lunch, you may be able to eat the Peking Duck yourself.

Since this is one of my favorite meals, I found it worth the small, recurring hunger pangs during the day.

As a previous poster noted, there is no weakspot on the varied menu.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 10:31 AM
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For all the foodies out there a note on "fusion" vs Western. As nouvelle cuisine has moved toward fusion in quite a few good restaurants for years, and fusion often means Asian influences -- fusion can seem Western. There's good fusion and horrid fusion and everything in between. I've had a lot of it.

Bed's fusion menu the night we were there was very good fusion -- but most definitely designed for Western tastes. First course was a tomato and cocoa soup with feta and lemongrass and delicious, second was a salad with sorbet in the center -- the most Western of all the tastes as they used a balsamic vinegar dressing. Main course was sushi grade tuna seared with chilis, quite hot and quite a lot of food compared to what you'd see on a nouvelle main course plate. Dessert was a creme brulee (you can see where the Western comments are coming from with all of this) and you dug through several other tastes to get to it (I think more cocoa, cream, something else ??) At any rate, it was really very good -- they weren't trying too hard and mucking up the flavors (which a lot of bad fusion chefs do) and everything was really fresh.

But I think Bed is equally about watching the other diners, the waitresses serving the food (if you don't visit Patpong it's the closest you'll get to the hootchie bar girl look) and if you like Buddha Bar music, you'll enjoy the dj.

I wish we'd had time for the other restaurants you mentioned. Next time.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 11:00 AM
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If you're going to Chiang Mai you might want to save Mahanaga for when you are there since there are fewer wonderful restaurants in Chiang Mai than there are in Bangkok.

I don't think any of the restaurants are among the top restaurants in bangkok and many here have experienced them to be essentially empty. I think pretty much the only people who eat there are guests of the hotel -- something that is not true of China House or Lord Jim at the Oriental.

I would agree with Kathie that the food at Bed Supper Club is pretty western while the food at Mahanaga while also called fusian is much more thai.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 11:14 AM
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Oops-- I meant I don't think any of the restaurants at the Peninsula are among the top restaurants in Bangkok. Should have reread before posting. Sorry.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 11:19 AM
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Thanks to the inputs so far. I suppose the gourmet restaurant at the Penn on their site is the Thai dining room.
Even if Harmonique is not in the same league is the food of good quality and well prepared and near "true" Thai. Five years ago I ate in a little "hole in the wall" in Bangkok where even the owner could not speak english but a local 2 tables away helped us out. I like non-tourist places but do not enjoy fumbling around with the menu. I also want air conditioned places for we will be there in mid-April.
Also, we do not eat fish but enjoy shell fish, beef, pork,chichen,etc. On the subject of chicken are you 99% certain that at the restaurants mentioned the chicken is well cooked so the avian flu issue is of no concern?
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 11:28 AM
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Stan, I don't know that I'd call Harmonique "true" Thai, mostly because it's such a combination of Thai and Chinese (Chinese-Thai owner). But it's a fine place for a lunch. Don't be shy about going out and finding your waitperson to ask for something. In the airconditioned part, they wander through occasionally...

While neither I nor anyone else can guarantee how your chicken will be cooked, let me remind you that there have been NO cases of avian flu from cooked or under-cooked poultry or eggs. The one (theoretical) risk for contracting the Avian Flu via eating is the traditional VN soup where fresh (uncooked) duck blood is added to the soup just before serving. I'd recommend you not try this.

I was chatting with my physician the other day about the avian flu, and she talked about the cases in Turkey. She recommends that you not play with dead bird carcasses...(lol)
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 11:56 AM
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I think you can get better food than Harmonique. You might try Pen (not in the Peninsula) for good thai food not aimed at tourists. It has no ambience and is pricy but the food is much better than at Harmonique at least based on my recent meal at Pen and my one meal last year at Harmonique.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 07:33 PM
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When you say Pen, what are you referring to if not the Bangkok Peninsula Hotel dining rooms? Address and landmark or 2 would be helpful.
Thanks.

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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 07:48 PM
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Stan- Pen is a restaurant written about by R.W. (Johnny) Apple in an Oct. NY Times. Here's the addressen 2068/4 Chan Road, Chongnonsee, Yannawa, 011-66-2287-2907

I write a report about in a few weeks ago -- I think the thread was Gloria in Bangkok. A few other people wrote about it earlier. If you can't find it let me know and I'll send it ttt.
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 07:56 PM
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i personally would not feel comfortable bringing my own wine to china house or bed (and i doubt they allow it)....harmonique, yes, but they may not allow it...

harmonique is an ordinary place, but the food is delicious and cheap...

jesters is very upscale...too bad to waste it on an app. and a salad...

i would go to the pen's terrace rest. on my first nite or to the chinese rest. in the basement....you will be tired and not want much to eat...
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Old Jan 29th, 2006, 07:59 PM
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Stan-- here's my review of Pen:Went to the Pen (not the Peninsula) restaurant last night. No atmosphere and was pretty empty. Food was very very good and service was warm and friendly and they spoke English. We basically had what Apple and someone on this forum recommended -- grilled giant prawns, deep fried parrot fish with mango sauce and stir fried morning glory with garlic. All was excellent. One prawn is more than enough for two people. Prices are high for thailand. Our bill for the above items, one bottle of water and one beer was over $40 which is more than we paid at China House the night before. However, I would still recommend it.
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Old Feb 5th, 2006, 01:53 PM
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Just returned, and 1000% happy with Peking Duck at China House. We thank you all for the recommendations. Lots to eat for two people, plus we ordered teh spring rolls (we should have passed on those - not our vegie filled type, but filled with crab and cream cheese kinda stuff. Exceedingly fresh and Good, but not worth the stomach space.) Also liked Harmonique, for lunch it's a lovely spot. We found the food very good, though had trouble getting them to make it spicy. Presentation of food was lovely, particularly the noodles. Unlike others here, we found the service fine, though slow.
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Old Feb 5th, 2006, 04:39 PM
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Glad you liked China House. It is without question my favorite restaurant in bangkok and I have dreams about the peking duck.
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Old Feb 5th, 2006, 06:20 PM
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Went to China House the other day for Peking Duck - mmmm, awesome! I love how they made sure there was no fat stuck to the skin. And for five star service, it was all a big bargain - it would cost twice that in London and the surroundings / service wouldn't have been half as good. Anyhow, thanks for the continual recommendations to try the duck there!
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Old Feb 5th, 2006, 06:26 PM
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Glad You liked the Peking Duck. I've been eating and recommending it for years and have never been disappointed by the food, ambience, service or value.
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Old Feb 5th, 2006, 06:55 PM
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bkkmei---in case you had not noticed, everthing is at least double or triple the cost in london...everything
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