The Grillstation

A restaurant with Gypsy in its soul

The guiding force behind the Grillstation German restaurant is Eckard Schutte, but more usually known as Gypsy. The reason for this was given previously when Gypsy was interviewed as our ‘Local Personality’, but Gypsy will be only too happy to recount this for you!

Gypsy has been in Chiang Mai for 16 years, running his style of restaurants, but the Grillstation has only been in its current location on Charoenprathed Road (directly opposite the Porn Ping Tower) for the past 18 months.

The single shophouse uses the pavement area as a covered terrace, with rustic split-log tables and bench seating, whilst inside, the settings are more standard, with good sized tables, clean tiled floors and a small bar area in the back corner which dispenses the German Warsteiner beer on tap (B. 75 per glass and very enjoyable). On the tables are tubes of genuine German Thomy hot mustard (Scharfer Senf), while behind the bar are other genuine German items - Gypsy’s bottles of schnapps!

The menu is not large, but extensive enough to offer a good cross-section of European food. Snacks (B. 60-120) cover french-fries, a schnitzel on cheese and rye bread or Dutch beef croquettes with bread at the top end.

Soups and baguettes are next (B. 90-120), followed by several salads (B. 80-160). Next up are the 11 pork choices priced between B. 140 for the grilled German meatloaf with fried eggs and bread, to a grilled pork leg with mashed potatoes and sauerkraut at B. 290, though most of the dishes are B. 190 or below.

Lamb and beef follow, with the most expensive being an imported T-bone steak with all the trimmings at B. 450, but most are less than B. 200.

A couple of salmon items and then dessert of the day rounds it out.

There is also a children’s menu with American hot dogs in a bun with accompaniments for B. 60 or even a small Wiener schnitzel with french-fries for B. 100.

Beverages include the Warsteiner draft, plus local beers around B. 55-75 and another German, the Erdinger Wheat beer at B. 150. There are also juices and soft drinks for children or those who do not want to drive home ‘under the influence’.

Gypsy produced a wide selection of the dishes he cooks, for us to try. The serving platters were huge, and the portions served on them likewise! He also assured me that these were the standard sized offerings, and when you consider that the grilled pork chops (400 gm) with herb butter and french-fries is only B. 180, this is certainly value for money.

I particularly enjoyed the plate of tomato salad done simply with oil and vinegar and the paprika schnitzel and home fried potatoes (bratkartoffeln) was a very filling and flavoursome dish.

Another dish sent through for us to try was almost the Grillstation’s ‘signature dish’ - the Wiener schnitzel which we had with a potato salad. The schnitzel was excellent, tender and not at all dried out, and the potato salad had everyone coming back for more, made with just a little spiciness to perk up the palate.

We finished with some schnapps, with a Kirsch for me and a Williams-Pears for Madame, but then took our leave before the ever hospitable Gypsy began a schnapps session!

The Grillstation is certainly a restaurant for large portions of good European food. Make sure you have a good healthy appetite before you go. Whilst Gypsy does have desserts, it would take a brave (or exceptionally hungry) man to get through an entree and main course and then line up for desserts. It is very moderately priced, and the children’s menu does make this a restaurant for the family. (Gypsy also does all-inclusive outside catering, so if you are having a party at home, give him a ring.)

An ideal restaurant for hungry Germans - or hungry anyones! If you have not been to the Grillstation, it is definitely worth considering, especially for families.

The Grillstation, 23/8 Charoenprathed Road (directly opposite Porn Ping Tower), Chiang Mai, telephone 053 818 355. On-street parking. Open seven days, 11.30 a.m. - 12 midnight.