24 October 2019

  • reviewer's rating :
summary : The team behind Snapper on Sukhumvit Soi 8, combines the Kiwi's culinary culture and French cooking techniques to create modern New-Zealand cuisine with this lively eatery in Sathorn Soi 12.

The New-Zealand team behind the long-run Snapper is also behind Kai located on Sathorn Soi 12, combining deli, café, restaurant, and bar in one venue. Kai which means food in M?ori language brings to Bangkok the strong New Zealand culinary concept focusing on high quality, fresh, and seasonal ingredients such as free-range meat, wild-caught seafood, and authentic homemade food like sauce, bread and cheese. Kai directly imports ingredients from New Zealand that include seafood, beef, lamb, and venison along with a large selection of wine and beers. Also, all the local ingredients are sourced from organic, free-range and sustainable farms. 

We visited the restaurant on a Thursday evening and it was jam-packed. The guests were a mix of foreigners living and working in Bangkok, businessmen who came here to relax after a busy day, families with young children and locals. Kai is a casual eatery with a rustic feeling. The outdoor patio invites you in to relax after work and to drink a pint of beer or a glass of wine along with comfort food. The stylish main dining room with wooden tables, concrete floor, and an open kitchen creates a warm and convivial atmosphere.

Kai offers a large selection of imported wines and beers from New Zealand which also pairs wonderfully with the food. We started our dinner with a glass of Monkey Bay Sauvignon Blanc, a light, crisp and fruity wine pairing well with our meal. 

The signature Lamb Croquette served with a sweet sauce had a nice chewy bite. A refreshing and classic favorite, the Tuna Tartare was prepared with diced yellow fin tuna tossed in a lime and Thai citrus dressing, with a fresh avocado cream, topped with mango salsa. Pan-Seared Hokkaido Scallops was served with a Jerusalem artichoke purée topped with Kai bacon. It came with Australian wild rocket dressed in chili and black pepper oil. 

The signature Snapper dish “Fush & Chups” is how Kiwis pronounce Fish & Chips, can be shared or not. The battered southern hake caught in the deep seawater of New Zealand is crispy on the outside and soft inside with a mild flavor served with the deep-fried golden cut fries and the divine homemade tartar sauce. 

From Kai’s grill, we had NZ Grass Fed Prime Beef Striploin 250g served with a generous portion of mashed potatoes, pea purée, and baby carrots. The beef striploin was marvelous. The onion gravy brings some smoky flavors exalting the whole dish. To pair with this delicious plate we had a glass of Black Cottage Central Otago Pinot Noir, lifted by berry fruits and fading to smoky notes. 

Finally, the signature Kiwi Pavlova will ravish any sweet-tooth. It is a traditional New Zealand crispy crust meringue filled with airy whipped cream and topped with kiwi and caramel passion fruit sauce. It comes with a delicious homemade vanilla ice cream with crunchy bits of honeycomb toffee.

Kai New Zealand is an easy-going and lively neighborhood eatery to sample unpretentious New Zealand dishes with an emphasis on the quality of ingredients and has great wines with honest prices. The service is friendly and efficient. Kai is a place for everyone who wants to enjoy good and simple food.