Its common knowledge that Thai food is one of the top cuisines in South East Asia, but have you been to Thailand and really had authentic Thai food?
We have found on our travels that there are so many restaurants that have way too many options on their menu, serving both Thai and western food aiming to please tourists... You’ll never find the locals eating here. Although popular, the food really isn’t of a good quality and isn’t true too the incredible Thai flavours.
So you are in a new country, how many people go to the restaurants knowing what your going to order before you go because it’s a safe bet, you've tried it back home in a Thai restaurant? We are prime examples, especially as Lauren is a vegetarian so sometimes it can be a little tough in South East Asia with language barriers. But why do we do it?! There’s so many amazing dishes and flavours out there, however it’s the safety blanket we need to step away from, especially when you are trying a new cuisine.
We were so excited to be invited to The Gallery in Koh Tao to try their signature experience, Trust The Chef. Not only were we looking forward to visiting the restaurant, but the whole experience that we were going to receive, as it was completely different to anything we had tried before.
What is trust the chef?
Trust the chef is The Galleries ultimate dining experience. Their head chef creates a culinary delight, based on your preferences of spice and dietary requirements. The experience includes a selection of starters, mains and desserts and features favourite dishes from their menu and some special creations which are unique to that day.
We honestly couldn’t recommend this enough, it was easily the best Thai food we have ever had and such a fun way to try different Thai dishes we may not have necessarily picked ourselves from the menu. We tried so many flavours which we had not yet tried in Thailand which were absolutely delicious. Aside from the flavours, the amount of food was crazy (which talking for anyone is a massive plus... how gutting is it if you have a delicious dish but there isn’t enough of it on the plate?!)
Here are the dishes we tried:
Left - right:
Fresh spring rolls and deep fried morning glory with shrimp, chicken and herb
Deep fried spring rolls and quail eggs with sweet and sour sauce
Crispy pork in a spicy curry sauce
White snapper marinated in fish sauce, deep fried with green mango and chilli
Shrimp with chicken and herbs in a spicy sauce
Chicken and cashew in sweet and sour thai sauce
Tom yum soup in a coconut
Tofu and cashew nut served with lemongrass and chilli sauce
Mango salad with peanut, red onion and chilli
Flour and taro balls in coconut milk
Mango sticky rice
We loved the food and the whole experience of Trust the Chef , honestly speaking it was outstanding, however one of our favourite things about The Gallery is the atmosphere of the restaurant, being a family run business you feel a warmth you don’t receive from every restaurant you go to. Speaking to all of the staff, they are so passionate and proud of what they provide which we loved.
We spoke with the head chef who told us that she could choose cheaper quality fish for example, however why would she want to do that? She cooks with passion and love and if she used cheaper ingredients she wouldn’t be able to put her full heart into each dish.
We also spoke with the waitresses about the amazing dishes and her reply was ‘happy customers make me so happy’ which was such a nice thing to hear. You can go to any restaurant and the staff are there let’s face it, for payday. It really does make a difference to have a team who are generally passionate about what they provide for their customers.
Not only is The Gallery a must place visit for food in Koh Tao, they have a wine bar with a delicious cocktail list and also run a gallery full of incredible photos taken from around Koh Tao by Chris, so take the time to have a look at these. If only we didn’t have backpacks, as we had planned which pictures we wanted in each room back home!
For a unique Thai experience and some outstanding Thai food, you must visit The Gallery. Step out of your comfort zone and try Trust The Chef, you will not be disappointed. Thank you so much to Chris and the team for such a great time.