The “New” Mediterranean Wave – ‘Aesop’s’ Restaurant to Open in Bangkok
Ok, so I’m likely to start a little burn with this title, although, we are seeing definitive signs of the lesser-loved Mediterranean foods moving-in on the Bangkok culinary scene where strictly French and Italian have long dominated.
Azzuro (Spanish) and Uno Mas (Spanish) restaurants just received the honor of Michelin L’Assiette (Plate), Islero’s cuisine (Spanish) by the latest chef Emiliano Vignoni Alvarellos has grown surely and steadily with rave reviews from the Bangkok Post and leading influencers. Even Chef Fatih (Asia’s 50 Best) The House Of Sathorn has rebranded his cuisine to reflect his beloved Turkish roots.
Then there are local institutions such as Olive Restaurant operating since 2002 and Bangkok’s new-ish Greek addition, Avra at the Lotus Hotel. Which also begs the question -although it might be in trend, but is there enough room for more Greek restaurants in Bangkok to remain sustainable? Interests may have been peaked but mainstream popularity still appears to wane in Bangkok.
John, along with this father who opened up Aesop’s in Sydney Australia since 1991, believes “..there is still a massive opportunity for Greek food in Bangkok”. A sentiment which supports the imminent opening of Aesop’s Restaurant in Bangkok, set for the first quarter of 2018. Bangkok Foodies gets the scoop on what foodies are to expect from a new Greek Restaurant in town.
NAME: John / Philipp
POSITION: Owner & Master of Ceremonies / Partner in Crime
RESTAURANT: Aesop’s – Greek Social Dining
BKF: We heard the new restaurant is called – Aesop’s Greek Social Dining. Could you please elaborate a little on what “Social Dining” would entail as opposed to regular dining?
John: The idea of social dining dates back to Ancient Greece where meals were prepared to be shared by large groups during festivals. It’s about using meals specifically as a way to connect with others – eat to socialise.
Expect warm ‘Greek Style’ service – a big welcome and a different type of hospitality. We create a fun and lively environment were guests can enjoy high quality food but also have a laugh and let their hair down.
BKF: What types of Greek dishes can we expect?
John: The love of sharing Greek food is a big part of Greek culture (just like in Thai culture), so all our dishes will be designed for sharing amongst friends and family.
Expect slow cooked roast lamb, pan fried saganaki cheese with ouzo and honey, grilled octopus with olive oil and Greek wine.
And if you’re a vegetarian there’s plenty for you too such as the Greek village salad, stuffed vine leaves and spanakopita (spinach pie).
With everything from ingredients, recipes to food presentation, we will elevate Greek cuisine to the level it deserves.
John: We will be located at Soi Saladaeng (exact details to come soon). We are really excited about being in Sala Daeng. The neighborhood has a great feel, is easily accessible and we love the proximity to Lumpini Park.
BKF: Approximately when do you plan to open the doors to the public?
John: Still TBD. We are aiming for an April launch but will be sure to keep everyone updated!
BKF: Will there be any plate breaking and people screaming “Opa”! ?
John: Without a doubt! My dad has operated Aesop’s in Sydney for 26 years and we have smashed more than half a million plates over that time. We will definitely be bringing this madness to Bangkok! We want to be the ‘go to’ place for people looking to eat amazing food, celebrate and just have a great time!
BKF: Why the Greek Storyteller ‘Aesop’ for your restaurant name? How does his character reflect your cuisine?
John: Aesop is a Greek storyteller who comes from the island Samos where my father was born before he moved to Sydney.
We believe our business is not just restaurants, it’s storytelling and taking our customers on an epic journey. Who better to inspire us than one of the greatest storytellers of all time!
BKF: With the Greek restaurants already existing in Bangkok, do you believe to be much of a demand?
John: We believe there is still a massive opportunity for Greek food in Bangkok. Whilst it is a lesser known cuisine than Italian or French, it is much loved and has recently been growing in popularity due to its fresh flavours and health benefits. It also offers great options for seafood lovers and vegetarian customers.
BKF: What do you think will be the challenges of a Greek restaurant in Bangkok and your plans to overcome that?
John: We think the challenges of running a restaurant in Bangkok, not just a Greek restaurant, will be many. However, we are looking forward to every minute of it!
Competition, staying on top of market trends, retaining great staff, unpredictable weather…it won’t be easy but if we stay focused on delivering high quality food, a warm and unique environment and giving our customers good value for money we can overcome anything!
We also believe in building a community and giving back, so we will introduce ways of caring for our staff, our suppliers, our customers and our community as a whole.
ADDRESS: Soi Sala Deang
PHONE: John (082 039 9101), Philipp (084 543 6900)