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Culinary Heights at Ikarus

MOVIE MAY
PRIN POLSUK

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Guest Chef May 2016: Prin Polsuk

A Gentleman from the Thai old school

Prin Polsuk is rather a softly-spoken man. However, with a great deal of self-assurance:

“I want to show the world what Thai food is really like.

Prin Polsuk

The head chef of the nahm in Bangkok is truly inspired by the idea that Thai cuisine can be elevated to a new, higher level – by reigniting its old values.

On the map of international haute cuisine, you will actually come across the name nahm twice. The first is in London, where star chef David Thompson was awarded the world’s first Michelin star for a Thai restaurant at the turn of the millennium, causing quite a stir in the industry. And the other is in Bangkok, where Thompson proved with the opening of his second nahm restaurant in 2010, that he was capable of repeating the success of his modern Thai cuisine in Thailand itself.

Since 2014, however, Prin Polsuk has been in charge there in his capacity as head chef. After attracting a great deal of praise as Thompson’s sous chef during the preceding years, the Thai-born chef, who had deeply impressed Thompson with his abilities, ideas and philosophy, was named by the Australian as his “representative” in Bangkok. By the end of his first year, he had repaid the trust placed in him in truly impressive style: he achieved a star in the Michelin Guide and seventh place in San Pellegrino’s The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2015, which also led to nahm being named Asia’s Best Restaurant.

What was it that so impressed the critics?

It was the unbelievable spectrum of different tastes and flavours that Polsuk seemingly effortlessly combines on the plate. Raw food goes hand-in-hand with cooked food, sweet with sour, spicy with mild, creamy with crispy – and all that is often found in just one dish.

And so the menu includes, for example, smoked catfish, which Polsuk chops with fresh shallots and serves alongside spicy beef from the grill and vegetables. Or kaffir lime in a kipper sauce with sweet pork, savoury fish dumplings and bamboo poached in coconut milk. Unusual combinations that you really have to experience in order to truly understand the way in which they naturally come together on the palate to create a harmonious whole.

It’s all about getting the balance right. Thai food is possibly the most complex and complicated cuisine in the world. As a chef, you must be prepared to immerse yourself in a dish and its flavours, doing things over and over again, in order to find the perfect balance.

Prin Polsuk

Prin Polsuk finds the sophisticated art of Thai cuisine to be missing from many other Thai restaurants. “For the last 50 years or so, Thai cuisine has enjoyed a great deal of popularity all over the world, and new establishments are opening up everywhere. The result of this is that people no longer know what Thai food really tastes like”. For the majority of people, the culinary horizon ends at red and green curry – and other than spiciness, these dishes fail to provide any kind of taste experience.

That is why Prin Polsuk believes it to be his calling to breathe new life into the old school of Thai cuisine at nahm. He leafs through antique cookbooks and tries to comprehend the full complexity of the recipes and dishes. Of course, this does not mean that Polsuk shuns new developments. That is why his philosophy focuses on the scientific search for the roots of Thai cuisine, whilst keeping a constant eye on the present and the future. An example of this is the occasional nod to modern Thai street food that can be found in some of his dishes.

One thing is for sure: you need to experience Prin Polsuk’s dishes before you are able to fully understand them. And you will have the opportunity to do just that in May, when he brings his old school Thai cuisine to Salzburg for his guest chef appearance at Restaurant Ikarus in Hangar-7.

Guest Chef Menu – Prin Polsuk

Snacks

MAR HOR: Pork – prawn – chicken
SATAY LEV: Skewer of guinea fowl – peanut
KANOM FOIV: Duck egg – prawn – almond – kaffir
HET SON KLIN: Mushrooms – crispy rice
2011 Riesling “Wehlener Sonnenuhr” Kabinett, Joh. Jos. Prüm, Mosel, Germany

Menu Prin Polsuk

Salad
YAM PLAM INSRI
Hamachi – pomelo – lemon grass – lime
PLA NEAU
Sirloin – cucumber – mint – eggplant
2011 Drei Generationen, Werlitsch Estate, Steirerland, Austria
***
Clear soup
GANG JEUD TEE NAM MAN
Pork – lobster
2014 Gewürztraminer, Nikolaihof Estate, Wachau, Austria
***
Relish
NAM PRIK NUM
Grilled catfish – banana leave
2001 Buçaco Branco Reservado, Bucaco Palace Hotel, Centro, Portugal
***
Curry
GANG GATI
King crab – coconut – turmeric – citrus
GANG HUNG LAE
Pork – pickled garlic – ginger
1998 Feinburgunder “Spitzer Pluris” Auslese, Franz Pichler, Wachau, Austria
***
Stir fried
NEAU PAT
Wagyu – onion – oyster sauce – basil
KA LUM PLEE / POD NAM PLAA
Thai vegetables – fish sauce
SA KAI YAANO
Grilled chicken – chili relish
2009 Barón D´a, Aristos Wines, Cachapoal Valley, Chile
***
Dessert
MOR GANG PEUK LAE RANG NOK
Taro pudding
LA MUD WAM GATI
Sapodilla – coconut cream
Kalysϊe, Kystin, Bretagne, France

€ 170,00

* Wine Pairings Euro 94
Please be advised that the menu can only be ordered per table.

ServusTV: Culinary Heights at Ikarus bei

ServusTV offers anyone wanting to watch the world’s best, most innovative chefs the ideal opportunity to do so. The documentary series “Culinary Heights at Ikarus“ shows the guest chefs up close and personal. See the challenges faced by the team at Restaurant Ikarus, and what Executive Chef Martin Klein discovered during his trips to the home countries of his guest chefs. 

Sun 15.10.21:15Culinary Heights at Ikarus - Nicolai Nørregaard

NAHM

Bangkok, Thailand

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Currently at Hangar-7

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Upcoming Guest Chefs...

Guest Chefs at Restaurant Ikarus

Nicolai Nørregaard

Guest Chef October 2017