Monday, 2 May 2016

Blackbox Cafe & Bar, Bangkok

The variety of food on offer in Bangkok is mind-blowing. To mix things up a bit, we went to Blackbox Cafe for some western style breakfast. There is an abundance of cafes and restaurants along Soi Sukhumvit 55 that boasts great reviews, but I quite liked Blackbox when I came here a few months back.

Mama Chan had an invigorating Lychee Mojito and I went for a Lady Lychee that combined the syrupy lychee with lemongrass essence. Papa Chan enjoyed his Singha beer served in a chilled glass, too. The menu has changed slightly since my last visit; there is more flexibility on the Thai menu while the western cafe grub was more or less the same.

Duck & Waffle
Mama Chan was hoping something similar to what she had at the 40th floor of Heron Tower in London. Sadly not. The waffle was weak - soggy, pale and undercooked with a doughy centre; duck leg confit was bland and its deep-fried skin had lost its crispiness; the custardy goodness of the egg was lost from overcooking; the odd salad leaves scattered around the waffle was purposeless. The only redemption was the wholegrain mustard syrup that had the right balance of sweet and savoury – we asked for a refill.

There was no chemistry on the plate. It’s not duck & waffle as we know it.

Benedict with Smoked Salmon and Grilled Tomato
The eggs benedict wasn’t served on toasted muffins, or even on the toast, instead they sat on the smoked salmon parcels. So the toasts served on the side were left dry as opposed to soaking up the hollandaise sauce and the runny egg yolk. It was still delicious, just somewhat fiddly to eat.

Grandmom’s Phad Thai
Papa Chan was more keen on the Thai items on the menu. The stir-fried rice noodle was good, flavoursome with plenty of tamarind aroma and fresh, bouncy prawns. That said, it was a very ‘clean’ phad thai, nothing like hot and dirty ones  on the streets, which were so much better. Papa Chan was also slightly baffled by the sprigs of spring onions sticking out of the noodles.

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Last November, I thought the food was good and the ambience was chilled, not to mention reliable wifi. We chose a couple of dishes from the Thai menu, washed down with an iced milk tea and a mango smoothie.

Pad Tom Yum Haeng 

The tom yum broth had a pleasing tartness from the lime juice, and I was happy with the mild spiciness. They have definitely toned it down for foreigners. The prawns were plump and bouncy, as were the noodles, which had a good bite to them.

Pad Krapow seafood
There was a lot of seafood on the plate, deep-fried then stir-fried with plenty of Thai basils and garlic. I genuinely can’t remember what this was like, must have been good though.

There are plenty of cafés serving western brunches that are incredibly good value. Considering an eggs royale would set me back S$20 in Singapore, or at least a tenner in London, these are coming in at half price. The same goes to all the waffles and cakes and desserts… I suppose the only catch is that I’m forgoing an authentic Thai meal for something I could get back home...

888 / 8-9 Ploenchit Road
Pathumwan District 10330
Bangkok
Tel: +66 2 651 5188

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