Nara Thai is an upscale Thai Restaurant that took over Burger King’s spot at the basement of Ion Orchard. Originally founded in Thailand in 2003 by a group of female entrepreneurs, their dishes draw inspirations from authentic recipes that have been reinvented and modernised. Classy and contemporary interior settings, polished and warm service, the dining experience at Nara Thai definitely leaves a lasting impression and a trail of dust for its competitors to pick up. Pandan Chicken: I have always been obsessed with ordering this dish whenever I’m having Thai food. I think it’s a habit from young I guess. Or maybe it’s just fascinating to unravel the chicken meat from its tightly woven pandan leaf. I am always one to enjoy fried chicken that is seasoned well(marinade goes far beyond the skin) but I thought it would be better if they could retain more moisture. Nobody loves a dry chicken. Green Curry with Chicken: This was the only dish we ordered that was not recommended on their menu. And sad to say, they were right. As a fan of green curry, I was really disappointed. It was too sweet and milky for my liking.Thai Fish Cakes: Glistening under the light, these fish cakes have been given the proper oiling treatment. But ignore the fact that it was deep fried and you will enjoy your meal much better. The fish cakes were a delight. Addictive, tasty and properly spiced, they bore resemblance to our “otah”. Please do not hesitate to use the dipping sauce that comes along. You will not regret it. Stir Fried Soft shall Crab: I vaguely remember having something similar at Thai Express but of course, the only resemblance remains in the taste profile. Otherwise, Nara Thai did it much better. A notch above its competitors. This dish may appear to be just a plate of yellow mess but looks can be deceiving. The highlight of my meal, the soft-shell crab in yellow curry was divine. The lightly battered crab was crunchy and tasty while the yellow curry was rich in flavours and spice, a great companion to a bowl of jasmine white rice. A speciality of the restaurant, the dish was cooked and seasoned perfectly.
It never really occur to me that Thai dishes were generally lacking in aesthetics. Well, not until I started to take a good look of my pictures. (Maybe it is just my mediocre photography skills.) But nonetheless, the Thai cuisine is a reminder to not judge a book by its cover. Beneath their matted appearance are flavours that are wondrously contradictory. Refined yet hearty, traditional yet innovative. Nara Thai maybe more pricey than your usual Thai food joint but it is worth a try, especially for its signature dishes.
2 Orchard Turn
Tel: 6634 5787