The New York Times, Sunday, November 28, 2010
Krua Apsorn (Apsorn’s Kitchen)
I’d read that Krua Apsorn was a favorite of the Thai royal family, but our tuk-tuk driver passed the unassuming diner, on a bustling street near the Democracy Monument, twice before stopping. (Word to the wise: have restaurant phone numbers on hand.)
When we finally arrived, it was quickly apparent that royals aren’t the only fans. Inside the bright restaurant, every Formica table was packed with prim office workers enjoying some air-conditioning with their lunch. So we grabbed a seat in the greenhouse-like rear courtyard, where laundry festooned the balcony above and the kitchen staff rinsed plates at an outdoor sink. A far cry from the elegance of Bo.lan — but the food was just as nuanced.
Both Mr. Thompson and our food-loving innkeeper had recommended that we order Apsorn’s house specials: crab meat in curry powder and southern-style yellow curry with river prawn and lotus shoots.
Was it the sweet crab meat, bathing in golden turmeric sauce, studded with glossy red peppers and pearly fat onion shoots? Or the perfectly balanced sour and spicy tones of the asparagus-like lotus shoots in yellow curry? Perhaps it was the friendly waitresses, in their country-style kerchiefs, grinning at our unabashed oohs and aahs.
In any case, we barely restrained ourselves from licking our plates. Topped off by a scoop of homemade coconut sorbet, the traditionally Thai meal at Krua Apsorn was, as they say in the Michelin Green Guides, “worth the trip” — all the way to Bangkok.