Gin Khao, a new establishment in the east of Singapore aims to serve up authentic Thai flavours that most Singaporeans love. The location is not the least accessible, so unless you have your own transport, i recommend that you hail a cab - because it's located right smacked in the middle of East Coast Park.
The restaurant's ambience is simple and kept minimalistic. As refreshers, the Thai Ice Rose Milk Tea is a good tweak to the traditional milk tea. The Coconut Mojito (non-alcoholic) on the other hand, is refreshing, consisting of lime and mint leaves paired with fresh coconut juice.
We had a few starters to try and were highly recommended the Gai Tod Tom Yum, also know as spicy marinated chicken wings. Although they were served crispy and golden brown, we felt that the heat from the spiciness we were expecting wasn't present and there was not even a slightest trace of tom yum flavour. Instead, they felt more like ordinary chicken wings. The Paw Pia Tod, deep fried prawn spring rolls which resemble cigar sticks, weren't too shabby taste wise, but came drenched in oil.
The best dish we all agreed on, was the Lard Moo - a warm minced pork salad with mint. The heat came from the chillies and the dish was packed with flavours and crunchy textures. We suggest pairing it with rice and for sharing because the portion came out to be pretty huge. From the grill, the Moo Yang, the grilled pork belly, isn't too bad a choice if you like your barbecued meat. The meat had a charred flavour that was pretty distinct and the dipping sauce was pretty addictive.
The Kung Ob Woon Sen is one dish we would recommend you to order when you are there, unless you are allergic to prawns. The dish features fresh prawns simmered in Thai garlic and pepper sauce on a bed of glass noodles that soaks up the goodness of the sauce - probably one of the more 'faultless' dishes from the ones we tried.
For desserts, we highly recommend you stick to the traditional ones like Mango with Sticky Rice and steer from the 'try too hard' creations like the Green Curry Gelato and Tom Yum Gelato which got my running hight and low for a glass of water to wash down the revolting taste on my tongue.
Although we sit on the fence about the food Gin Khao, the prices are relatively competitive, if not for the pretty secluded location. The basic Thai dishes like the Tom Yum Kung and Som Tam (Papaya Salad) didn't make the mark, which left us a little bamboozled. I mean, if you are serving authentic Thai cuisine, the basics should be gotten right, right? Oh yes, and parking is a tad expensive at Gin Khao, which leaves us sitting on the fence again as to whether a trip down is actually worth it.
1020 East Coast Parkway, #01-01
+65 6604 8996
This was an invited media tasting.