“Chor Ladda…and a glass of white wine, please,” I said to the waiter at Rama V, barely 2 minutes after reaching and saying my hellos. We were there for the ala carte buffet at Rama V, priced at RM68.90++ per person with a free flow of wines, beers and juices. The menu for the buffet is fairly extensive – I was tempted to order everything but made the
mistake (more like pleasure) of ordering too many rounds of my favourite items. A girl’s gotta have her Pad Thai!
For starters, there was the Mieng Kam, featuring shreds of toasted coconut, peanuts, ginger, tiny wedges of lime, birds eye chilli and dried shrimp, all wrapped in betel leaf and topped with a peanut-y, shrimp-y sauce. The chor ladda was, as expected, delicious. Delicate and blue-tinged, these flower-shaped dumplings came stuffed with a sweet-savoury amalgam of minced chicken and crushed peanuts.
Yam Pla Duk Fu (Spicy Crispy Catfish Salad) was a palate cleanser. Crispy, yet fluffy inside, the fish was dressed with a tangy, sweet and spicy concoction that teased and tingled my tongue. The Yam Pra In (Spicy Eggplant Salad) combined the mellow flavour of the eggplant with piquant flavours from shallots, chillies and vinegar.
Decent was the Pik Kai Tod – chicken wing, deboned and stuffed with minced chicken and mushrooms. The Thai chilli sauce was more diluted and less sweet compared to the bottled variety, an indication that it was prepared in-house. Ideal with beer, this one. The Thung Ngen Yueng (Thai Money Bags) was a snack of golden beancurd bags, filled with minced chicken and prawns, and deep-fried till crispy. I found this slightly on the greasy side.
Tom Yum Kung is often delicious, but at Rama V, I like a soothing bowl of Tom Ka Kai (spicy chicken tom yam soup with coconut milk). And no, I don’t share my Tom Ka Kai so please order your own. The broth – mildly spicy from the spices with just an edge of sweetness – was enriched with chicken pieces, lemongrass, pepper, cilantro and kaffir lime leaves. I didn’t care much for the Tom Yam Pla Chon (Spicy King Fish Soup) which lacked the special touch only coconut milk can provide.
Green Curry Beef was a standout among the dishes that afternoon. The velvety coconut milk-based dish was fiery and delicate at the same time. Also noteworthy was the Gaeng Ped Pol Linchee, Rama V’s popular roasted duck red curry with lychee—every spoonful boasted a balance of sweet , savoury, smoky and spicy flavours.
My favourite Pad Thai noodles came laced with swirls of egg, chicken, shrimp, beansprouts, scallion, cilantro leaves and lime. The noodle strands were soft and well-seperated while the beansprouts tasted pleasantly crisp. We had four plates of this. A few more glasses of wine later and I’m not sure if I ate certain dishes, including the Thai fried rice, stir-fried asparagus with garlic and sautéed beef with young pepper and chillies.
I do however remember eating desserts – pumpkin custard and red rubies with jackfruit in coconut milk. I found the red rubies crunchy and refreshing, while the former was sweet but not cloying with was just the right closing note to lunch.
Rama V’s Weekend ala carte Lunch Buffet is available between 12-3pm on Saturdays and Sundays. For now, this is an on-going promotion so visit them and eat (and drink) away! Service was efficient, but uncertain at times; it really depends on who you get as a waiter. Nonetheless, I’m looking forward to my next visit this weekend, so if you’re there, do say hi. I won’t bite…unless you attempt to take my Pad Thai or Tom Ka Kai!
Price: 6/10 (I found it pretty good value for money)
Verdict: Despite being a buffet, the food was still good and consistent quality was maintained. If you want good variety without having to queue at a buffet line, this is a good option.
Rama V Fine Thai Cuisine
5, Jalan U Thant,
55100, Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03-2143 2663