Even for guests staying at a private villa with a personal chef on hand to prepare delicious meals at home, booking a dinner out at a restaurant with a loved one, friends or even the whole family makes for a pleasant evening out.
Koh Samui offers visitors one of the most eclectic and appealing fine dining scenes in Southeast Asia and a number of quality stand-alone restaurants have opened on the island in the last few years to cater to independent travellers with a taste for world class food.
International chefs from around the world bring their skills and flavours to the menus on Koh Samui, complimenting the rich tastes of the local cuisine with also occasionally offering their own take on Thai food.
Here are 5 restaurants on Koh Samui that combine top class cuisine with a sophisticated island ambiance. They are listed by area and proximity to specific private villas with one menu highlight form each restaurant (there are many more).
The Larder, North Chaweng
Executive Chef Martin Selby opened The Larder in December 2012 together with food and beverage aficionado Damian Ahern. The restaurant and bar draws reference from British gastro pubs with relaxed, informal atmosphere and a menu of contemporary British and European cuisine that combines comfort food and culinary classics. Modern cooking methods add personal flair and innovation and house cocktails are reconstructed with an original twist.
The Loin´s Den – seared lamb tenderloin with black pudding & potato croquette, smoked celeriac & grilled courgette.
Motsamot, Baan Jakawan, Sangsuri Villa Estate (Viila 1,2 and 3), Baan Fan Noi.
H Bistro, Bophut
Although attached to the Hansar Resort on Bophut beach, H Bistro feels like a stand alone restaurant as its housed in its own contemporary two-storey building overlooking the sea. Widely considered one of the best restaurants on Koh Samui, H Bistro features a fresh Mediterranean menu and exclusive wine list. Chef Stephen Jean Dion was formerly the private chef for the King and Queen of Jordan and brings all his experience to a menu of epicurean delight that includes fresh ingredients from all over the world.
Hansar seafood melody with Maine lobster, Madagascar prawns, Hokkaido Scallop and Alaskan king crab.
Dhevatara Residence, Ban Kinaree, Baan Sawan, Suralai, Villa Kya, Mullion Cove, Villa M.
A particular favourite for lovers of seafood, Barracuda is a German owned eatery with a skilled Thai Kitchen team that focuses on a fusion of high quality Mediterranean and Thai dishes. The specials are displayed on blackboards and frequently changed based on available fresh produce at Koh Samui’s local markets. The restaurant’s design recaptures the lost art of traditional Thai fishing with just 20 covers for dining and an outside lounge area to enjoy one of the signature cocktails, Barracuda provides a cozy and sophisticated atmosphere to enjoy a fine dining experience.
Fillet of sea bass with puy lentils, chorizo, caper and a pesto sauce
The Emerald Beach Villas (1,2 and 3 ), Villa Blue View, Miskawaan Villa Estate - Villa Water Lilly, Villa Lotus, VillaFrangipani, Villa Wayu, Villa Acacia, Villa Gardenia, Villa Champak,, Villa Hibiscus, Villa Sila, Villa Bouganvillea, Villa Monsoon, Villa Riva.
Alimundo in Lamai offers an extensive menu that includes authentic Thai dishes, classical and fusion international dishes with influences from Belgian, French and Italian cuisine. The dishes combine the selected fresh produce with imported ingredients to offer diners “A taste of the world”. There’s a chilled out ambiance with gentle tunes to accompany the chef’s creations, while groovier beats are played on the upper terrace lounge, Suono.
Alimundo avocado and crab salad
Baan Hinta, Baan Hinyai, Baan Talay, Baan Sarika, YL Residence
Nikki Beach, Lipa Noi
Villa guests on Samui’s secluded west coast at Lipa Noi don’t have to venture far for a culinary treat. The island’s coolest international beach club, Nikki Beach not only offers the latests tunes and tropical poolside chic, it also boasts an eclectic menu of fabulous cuisine and also offers regular weekly feasts. Seafood Saturday features the finest and freshest catch available, with each dish prepared to taste by the chef, be it seared, steamed fried or baked. Then on Sunday, the Amazing Sunday Brunch features more than 50 items including a pasta station, omelet station, waffle station, seafood and sushi assortment, carving table, dessert table, Thai station, and an “around-the-world” table featuring a different ethnic cuisine every week.
Nikki’s Signature Plate: Marinated Seabass Carpaccio, Sesame Seared Ahi Tuna, Vegetable Spring Rolls, Tomato Bruschetta, and Marbella Shrimp Pil-Pil
Dhevatara Cove - Baan Chang, Haineu, Baan Samlarn, Baan Rattana Thep, Baan Tao Talay, Baan Chao Lay, INASIA, Baan Kilee, Baan Ora Chon, Baan Puri, Ban Suriya, Ban Tawantok, Waimarie.
by Wayne Hue