Je Ngor Kitchen
A Highly Popular seafood name in Bangkok0
Je Ngor Kitchen is a favourite and most Thais living in Bangkok will associate this name with great seafood. But for you to enjoy great local food like Bangkokians do, you will need to forget your westerner expectations of restaurant atmosphere or decorum and enjoy food the way they often do it here: in a simple setting that some may see as too minimalistic.
Je Ngor is the nickname of Bangkok-born celebrity owner, Mrs. Na-Chanok Sae-Ung, who has been on the local culinary scene of Bangkok for decades with no less than 13 restaurants across the city. The most famous is located on Sukhumvit Soi 20, next to Rembrandt Hotel, and Sathorn Road next to the Sukhothai Hotel, but the original restaurant is on Sri Praya Road, not far from the Sheraton Orchid Riverside hotel.
Every branch of the Je Ngor restaurants serves excellent seafood with a Thai Chinese influence and the quality of the dishes served is consistent across all the branches. Dining at the original Je Ngor Kitchen has a local charm, this is an uncomplicated yet incredibly popular restaurant. From the outside, nothing differentiates it from any other local joints and it's hard to imagine that this tiny unpretentious corner restaurant with just a couple of neon lights is where the popular brand was born. The mood is convivial and it does have a special vibe. Almost like a secret except for those in the know, this old restaurant is one people keep coming back to on a regular basis.
Once inside, the décor is typical of Thai dining venue where families and friends like to gather for a happy dinner a little out of the ordinary, which means none. Most local Thai restaurants don't waste any time or money on those frivolities… it is just about the pleasure of sharing food, so don't expect anything else but tables, chairs, cutlery and a huge selection of great dishes. The restaurant is full most of the time, don't be surprised if you are shown past the kitchen and the restroom to another room upstairs where white walls are the order of the day. It's so unadorned it's almost chic! (If you can't stand minimalism, go the the branch on Sukhumvit Soi 20, it's more cosy).
We always like to check out the house specialty, so we had to go for their famous pepper crab. We just forgot to check the price when ordering, which you shouldn't do if you don't want to end up with a little surprise when they bring the bill. The crab was huge and well cracked so we had no problem enjoying it with minimum mess. Cooked with a huge amount of those special tiny Thai garlic buds and tons of black pepper, the taste was simply fantastic… and so was the price: 2,000 baht for the whole giant crab. Sounds expensive but it's worth it… just remember to check the size when ordering and pick something less extravagant if you are on budget.
Other specialties you should add to your list: try the special stir fried sliced morning glory or some fried rice vermicelli with water mimosa and prawns. The spicy and sour Poh Tak soup we had was cheap (120 baht) but delicious, it resembles a Tom Yum with shrimp, squid and mushrooms but the most important ingredients are basil leaves. Then if you are brave, don't miss the delicious duck tongues (300 baht), something different to tell your friends about once home. The menu is in English and very well illustrated, making it easy to order. Service is efficient but not particularly smiley. Prices can vary from very cheap to really expensive and everyone can find something delicious within their budget.
If you are craving for some really good seafood in Bangkok, Je Ngor is the place and with 13 branches there probably is one near your hotel. And if you invite your Thai friends there they will be impressed by your local knowledge!
Je Ngor Kitchen
Original Je Ngor : 541/9 Soi Charoen Krung 39 Intersection of Siphaya road.
Je Ngor Sathorn: 11th FL,Bangkok Insurance Bldg,25 South Sathon Road (Near Sukhothai and Banyan Tree Hotels)
Je Ngor Sukumvit: 68/2 Sukhumvit Soi 20 (Newa Rembrandt Hotel)
Je Ngor's Kitchen Narathiwat: 2150, Narathiwat Rd., Chong Nonsi, Yannawa.
- Opening Hours: 11:00 am to 13:00 pm
- Location: Original Restaurant : Intersection of Maha Set Road Road and Charoen Krung 39
- Address: Maha Set Rd, Bang Rak, 10500, Thailand
- Tel: +66 2 235 8537