Now in Ekamai, the original restaurant Bourbon Street flourished for 24 years at Washington Square, Mark Bibby Jackson tries some good ol’ Cajun fare. Photos by Nick McGrath.
It was AsiaLIFE Cambodia’s long-time art director, Keith Kelly, who introduced me to the Cajun food. Hailing from New Orleans himself he explained that they have a whole different type of food down there. As such, Bourbon Street – Bangkok’s only Cajun and Creole restaurant – had much to live up to.
Despite all the tasty Cajun offerings we opted to start with an American classic – buffalo wings, glazed with a spicy sauce and served alongside a homemade blue cheese dressing (B160). The tangy and slightly sweet sauce went excellently with the savoury blue cheese sauce. The wings were not at all overcooked as is so often the case, and the eight-wing portion was generous.
For our mains we headed down south. The blackened red fish (B335) is based on Paul Prudhomme’s recipe. The stand-out dish of the night, the fish was delicate yet the spicy Cajun seasoning dusted on it enlivened the flesh and left a tingle on my tongue – invigorating my taste buds. Even the dirty rice had oodles of flavour – far removed from its steamed white cousin.
Being a Monday we decided to pair this with some red beans and rice (B210) – a traditional New Orleans Monday dish and all-you-can-eat special at Bourbon Street on this day. The ultimate in comfort food, the red beans reminded me of the Central American food I adore. Yet the Andouille sausages in its midst gave the stew more body and flavour. Both dishes came served with some corn bread.
The desserts were two more New Orleans classics – bread pudding (B120) and bananas Foster (B170). I found the latter’s banana liqueur and rum sauce a trite overwhelming, but the bread pudding was a great dish. So much lighter than an English bread pudding, the pineapple, raisins and cinnamon made this dish distinctly morish. The pecan praline Bourbon sauce is great for people with a sweet tooth, but we preferred to combine it with the almost Devonian, creamy vanilla ice cream that came with the bananas Foster.
Washed down with a perfectly respectable Santa Helena cabernet sauvignon (B190/glass, B960/bottle) and with impeccable service, Bourbon Street is a good alternative for both groups and also single diners, who can prop themselves up against the bar and chat with the regulars. No doubt this Bourbon Street will prove as much a mainstay of the Bangkok restaurant scene as it precursor did for the previous 24 years.
Bourbon Street, 9/39-40 Soi Tana Arcade, Sukhumvit 63 (Ekamai)
Tel: 02 381 6801-3