Pesca Mar & Terra Bistro

reviewed by : Ken Barrett

20 September 2017

  • reviewer's rating :
summary : A market-to-table concept in which freshness of fish, meat and organic vegetables is carefully controlled, and where the cheese selection is so impressive that the restaurant has its own cheese room.

Pesca Mar & Terra had been open for only a week when we went to see what it was all about, and already the bistro had an established feel and a crowd of enthusiastic diners. Which, for a new outlet in this crowded town, is a real achievement.

The owners have based Pesca Mar on their very successful Cocotte Farm Roast & Winery on Sukhumvit Soi 39, following the same market-to-table organic concept but with the emphasis on fish and shellfish.

Pesca Mar is located on a corner site at Ekamai, with large and handsome premises. Entering, live fish tanks are on the right and so too is the open kitchen, bustling cheerfully and emitting an appetising aroma of fresh fish.

In the centre of the dining room is a telephone-box-sized glass-walled wine cellar, crammed with bottles, and with the term “walk-in” applicable only for the very slim. Through the main room there is an aromatic cheese room, with some 80 cheeses from around the world. Beyond the cheese room is the garden courtyard, where smoking is allowed.

Chef in overall charge is Jériko Van Der Wolf, who has proved such a hit over at Cocotte, with Marco Pacetta ensconced in the Pesca Mar kitchen. Naples-born Marco clocked up an impressive number of Michelin-rated restaurants before arriving in Bangkok, and says that sourcing his ingredients from the best markets is one of the most satisfying aspects of Pesca Mar.

Much of the seafood comes from the famed Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo. Meat for the cold cuts is sourced from La Boqueria Market in Barcelona and Rungis Market in Paris. Beef is direct from Rangers Valley Farm in Australia, and French specialist Beillevaire sources the cheese.

We started with a glass of Chandon Brut (240 baht), a sparkling chardonnay from Australia, and then moved on to a Castello Banfi Le Rime pinot grigio from Tuscany (240 baht).

An Artisan Board kicked off the meal, with three cheeses and three cold cuts at 920 baht: all three cheeses had the powerful earthy aroma of truffle, and the wooden platter was accompanied by toast topped with smashed olives.

There is a small selection of tapas, and we selected a spoon of Angus beef tartare topped with oyster mousse and oyster juice (250 baht), followed by a Hokkaido scallop cooked in miso butter and served with yuzu foam (280 baht).

We shared the Cap’tain platter (5,700 baht), a splendid heaping of Maine lobster, two Alaskan king crabs, six black tiger prawns, and black pudding, tuna steak, grilled beef, lamb shortloin, and Chiang Mai sausage. Somehow we also found room for a final course of bouillabaisse (1,150 baht for a single serving), the fish served in a boat dish with saffron potatoes, the rich stock being poured in over the top.

A couple of glasses of Campo Viejo Rioja Reserva (310 baht) provided a nice dry edge to the seafood.

Pesca Mar & Terra Bistro is certainly one of Bangkok’s most dramatic new openings of this year.