In the Khao Tao Beach area, a few kilometres to the south of the famous Thai resort of Hua Hin, you’ll find Baan Tao restaurant. Words by Keith Hancock, photos Robert Fretwell

Baan Tao RestaurantThis no nonsense local restaurant is deceptively good and a firm favourite with locals and expats. It is exactly the kind of place that holiday makers would miss out on, and they really would be missing out on something good.

Serving mainly Thai dishes there are a few Western meals supplementing the menu for those who don’t prefer to go native. The restaurant is just a small roadside affair the kind you’ll find everywhere in Thailand. The food though is of an extremely good quality.

I went mainly for the Thai dishes but threw in one Western one to see how they coped with it. The answer is they did very well with everything. The Red Curry with Roasted Duck Soup for starters was fabulous, I really loved this and at just THB90 it was incredibly inexpensive. A rich coconut style soup brimming with lemongrass flavours, tiny tomatoes and that usual Thai kick.

Among the salads was an exceptional Thai Pomelo Salad at THB100. Pomelo can be notoriously dry in Southeast Asia but this was about as fresh as it gets; mouthwateringly light and tasty. It was packed with prawns, cashew nuts and a super dressing. I also enjoyed an excellent Stir Fried Chicken with Water Chestnuts costing just THB80. This was again full of flavour, the chicken was cooked perfectly and of good quality and the sauce lifted it all to another level.

As previously stated the restaurant does serve some Western favourites as well, to sample this side of the menu I tried the Wiener Schnitzel at THB140. The god quality, flavoursome meat was accompanied by salad potatoes and was a pretty authentic look at this great Austrian classic.

I really enjoyed the atmosphere in this restaurant. The staff were really friendly and helpful and it all made for a really pleasant visit.

Khao Tao
77110 Hua Hin