HEAT's Thai Food Festival

Fab fare from the 'Land of Free'
By Earl D.C. Bracamonte

Gourmands will enjoy the rich distinctive flavors of Thai cuisine at Edsa Shangrila as its all-day dining restaurant, Heat, stages “Flavors from the Kingdom of Smiles,” a food festival that runs 'til Jan 23rd during lunch and dinnertime.
Visiting chef Thitisorn “Bic” Traiwongpaisarn flew in from Shangri-La Bangkok to specially prepare traditional Thai dishes and engage diners with the masterful melding of sweet, spicy, sour and salty tastes as only a Thai would know how.
During a media dinner hosted by Chef Bic, attendees sampled some new Thai dishes prepared specially for the foodfest. After enjoying a refreshing round of gelatin-based pandan and ginger/lemongrass shooters, we partook of grilled prawns and sate (take your pick from pork, beef or chicken) that went splendidly well with Som Tum Kai Kem, green papaya salad with salted eggs. Yummmy!
Then we sampled Pla Tod Takrai, deep-fried Dory fillet with crispy lemongrass on a plate with steamed rice on pandan leaves. The aroma will just whet your appetite more.
For those with a zest for zing, go for the spicy bite of the tasteful Panang Goong Yang, grilled prawns in panang curry sauce. Deliciously hot!
Some of the other popular dishes featured in the interactive kitchen stations include Tom Kha Gai, chicken immersed in galangal coconut soup; the staple Tom Yum Goong, spicy & sour soup with prawns; Kaen Phed Ped Yang, roasted duck in red curry sauce; the all-time favorite Pad Thai, stir-fried noodles; as well as Phad Kha Prao Neua, braised beef with spicy & sweet basil sauce.
“Try the minced pork salad with lime, the citrus fruit gives the dish a sharp sourish aftertaste. This is best eaten with vegetables and sticky rice,” Chef Bic suggested.
“This dish is from the eastern part of Thailand where you'll see vast ricefields in the lowlands. It is also here where they raise livestock. Since they're far from the sea, they use meat instead of seafood,” he added.
Chef Bic has an extensive knowledge in Thai as well as Western cuisine; having graduated with a baccalaureate degree in Hospitality major in Kitchen & Restaurant Management from the Dusit Thani College in Bangkok. He has worked in five-star hotels and restaurants in his home country and in Australia for over a decade; notably Le Notre France, an affiliate of the famed three Michelin-starred French restaurant, where he worked with internationally prominent chefs Pierre Gagnier, Guy Martin and Thomas Keller.
From a distinctive background of both Asian and Western cuisines, coupled with a familiarity of an extensive selection of ingredients, Chef Bic prefers to use certain ingredients that enhance the flavor and texture of any dish, leaning towards sea salt in particular.
Back home at Shangri-La Bangkok, Chef Bic supervises a culinary team of 20 at Angelini's, the hotel's Italian outlet.
At Heat, guests will enjoy a vast selection of culinary specialties cooked a la minute or freshly prepared for an engaging restaurant experience in a resort-like ambiance. The restaurant is open daily for a la carte and buffet spreads from 6 in the morning to 11 in the evening.
For smorgasbord options, lunch is from noon to 2:30 in the afternoon while dinner is served from angelus 'til 10:30 in the evening.
For reservations and/or more information about the on-going Thai Food Festival, simply call 633-8888 locals 2740 and 2741 or send an email to restaurantrsvns.esl@shangri-la.com.

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