If you are like I am, you’ve been waiting for the opening
of The Chedi and the opportunity to sample real Indian food prepared by real
Indian chefs. Of course, I also wanted to see the design work, and how the
architect had integrated the old British Consulate building into this strikingly
contemporary resort. Beautifully.
chicken, tandoori, oven braised chicken in tomato-cashew nut sauce
The Dining Out team was delighted to spend a recent evening
at the restaurant. In very contemporary style, the chefs work in full view of
the diners behind a low bar. This is a nice touch. The tables are contemporary,
but library-style lighting above each softens the ambiance. Certain touches
stand out: lemon grass scented ice cold towels served to each diner, enormous
linen napkins, and frozen tea ice cubes for our iced teas were quick eye
catchers. The menu is easy to read and logically divided into Thai, Indian and
We tried a bit of each, starting with a mixture of fresh
breads that are prepared on the premises and served with aioli as well as
butter. Next came a creamy lentil soup filled with fresh herbs and served in a
loaf of rustic farmer’s bread. The soup was hearty enough that, if combined
with one of the salads, it could easily become lunch. Next came a marinated,
seared Magura tuna loin salad with spiced lemongrass oil. The mixed baby salad
greens were tossed with fresh herbs and sherry vinaigrette. Garlic chips further
flavored the mixture. This is a very large salad, beautifully prepared and
served with style. I would go back to the restaurant simply to indulge myself in
this outstanding salad again. The soup is priced at 260 baht, the salad at 480
baht. We moved on to a yam sam-o, a pomelo salad with spicy/sweet chili dressing
served with tempura soft shell crab. And we delighted in the filet of fresh sea
bass cooked in Thai red curry sauce with shredded kaffir lime leaves and green
beans. Priced at 350 and 500 baht, both were quite good.
lentil soup filled with fresh herbs and served in a loaf of rustic farmer’s
Warm, fresh plates and cutlery arrived. We were excited about
the selection of Indian foods that were being prepared by Chef Sahoo, who hails
from Bombay. Buttered chicken, tandoor oven braised chicken in tomato-cashew nut
sauce, was the first dish to arrive. It was quickly followed by lamb rogan jus,
an onion and yogurt lamb curry with mixed spices. The aromas were tantalizing,
but more followed. Palak panir, that delightful, spicy spinach and cream cheese
curry, joined the assortment. Then red snapper tandoor and chicken tikka were
placed on the table, along with an assortment of naan breads and bowls of
Briyani rice. We faced a dilemma. Where to begin?
tuna loin salad with spiced lemongrass oil
I chose the buttered chicken. The sauce was smooth, flavorful
and not too spicy. The palak panir, spinach curry, was surprisingly spicy and
very nice. It was easy to taste the fresh coriander and fenugreek spices. The
chicken tikka, also quite spicy, was delicious combined with a bit of crisp
fresh onion and the very flavorful Briyani rice. The ajwain seeds gave a unique
flavor to the red snapper tandoori. The lamb rogan just was just delicious with
the blended flavors of onion and yogurt. The Indian dishes were priced between
350 baht and 700 baht. Consult with the Indian chef (there are two) if you have
any particular requests. All of the dishes can be prepared more or less spicy.
The naan breads – garlic, potato, mixed herbs, cheese, pickled onion or chili
– are excellent.
Chef Bonnaud Lionel prepared the Chedi Sampler for dessert
– chocolate fondant, chocolate mousse, kaffir lime cheesecake, and rose cr่me
brul้e. These are the types of desserts that haunt you at midnight. You
want more! Desserts are priced between 200 and 400 baht.
The Chedi offers an outstanding wine list as well as a large
selection of coffees and teas. It was a lovely evening.
The Chedi Restaurant, open daily at 7 a.m. for breakfast, 12
noon for lunch, 3 p.m. for afternoon tea, and 6 p.m. for dinner. Closes daily at
10.30 p.m. 123 Charoen Prathet Raod, Muang, Chiang Mai 50100, on the banks of
the Ping River. Telephone 053-253-333, fax 053-253-352. Reservations suggested
for large parties.