Osha Bangkok recently opened its towering doors at a prominent corner spot on Wireless Road opposite Lumpini Park, and is run by the same family behind five hugely successful Thai restaurants in San Francisco. Along with some outrageously spectacular décor, the Osha team have recruited a Thai celebrity Iron Chef, who’s now the man responsible for the restaurant’s menu of ‘authentic Thai cuisine with a molecular twist’ – and a twist there certainly is.
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Upon entering, it’s hard to imagine this restaurant was borne from a modest noodle shop in the suburbs of San Francisco. A glance at the gigantic doors is the first sign of the extravagance that awaits inside. Osha’s gold-on-purple theme definitely leaves a lasting impression, and other flamboyant touches include an enormous handmade ‘chada’ (crown) hanging over the bar, as well as some traditional King Rama artwork upstairs, which is worth the trip up the magnificent spiral staircase to see alone.
With all this grandeur, we were hoping that the dishes coming out of the kitchen would be just as spectacular – and we were not disappointed. Starting with the ‘Dancing King Prawns’ (380 baht) - a take on koong cher nam pla, the flavours here were pretty reminiscent to the original, only with the spicy sauce coming in the form of a scoop of sorbet, and the freshness of the raw shrimps was a few levels higher than what you’d find on the street.
Foodies looking for some invaluable Instagram material shouldn’t miss out on the experience that is Osha’s Tom Yum Koong. Thailand’s classic spicy and sour soup is completely deconstructed at Osha Bangkok, presented to the table in a contraption looking like something straight out of a science lab. It’s actually a device normally used to make coffee, and works in the same way to infuse all the usual tom yum herbs with the soup, which is then poured over fresh shrimps and mushrooms. Again, taste wise it’s similar to the original, just with fresher produce and presentation that really is quite sensational.
Arguably the highlight of the meal, however, was Mussaman Lamb Shank, a dish when done correctly can’t fail to impress. Arriving at our table with burning cinnamon sticks filling the air with fragrant smoke, the meat was as succulent as it should be after being braised for 48-hours, and the sweet cabbage, almond chips and soy beans brought more complexities to the overall texture and flavour.
Another Thai staple where chef Thaninthorn’s creativity is clearly evident is the Pad Thai, served with a giant shrimp and Chai Ya (salted egg), and also the dinner party-favourite of deep fried Choo-Chee Silky Fish is similarly enhanced by the accompaniment of a delightful pumpkin puree.
Osha Bangkok’s signature ‘Volcanic Beef’ takes its inspiration from the classic pad krapow neua (stir fried beef with Thai basil), although the 1,500 baht asking price gets you much more than just a plate of sorry looking minced meat over a pile rice. Instead, Osha have used premium Wagyu beef, deep fried the basil, confit-ed the egg and served it all up in a hollowed-out slab of granite.
Dessert is often overlooked in Thai cuisine, so after opting for a fresh fruit and sorbet assortment, we weren’t expecting much… oh, how we were wrong. Almost epitomizing the whole Osha Restaurant experience, this normally modest dish became a whole spectacle in itself; the fruits and fresh sorbet are stacked on top another huge slab of granite rock, which is then placed over steaming dry ice that engulfs the whole table – an event that makes anyone nearby reach for the cameras in an instance.
Find Osha Bangkok on the corner of Wireless Road and Ruam Rudee Road, very close to the northeastern corner of Lumpini Park. Ploen Chit BTS and Lumpini MRT Station are both around five minutes’ walk away.
Osha Thai Restaurant & Bar
- Opening Hours: Lunch: 11:00 – 14:30; Dinner: 18:00 – 24:00
- Location: 99 Wireless Road, Lumpini Pathumwan, Bangkok
- Tel: +66 (0)2 256 6555 // reservations: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Dress Code: Smart Casual (no sports clothes, shorts or open footwear - applies to children also)