Thai food is amazing; simple as that. I relish in the thought of planning a trip to Thailand, if solely for the fact that I’ll be gorging myself on incredible food for less than a couple bucks. Now, thanks to Adam Cliff, formerly of Chachawan, Hong Kongers can head to Samsen for their favourite Thai street food. Very authentic dishes set in a cozy, vibrant restaurant make Samsen the perfect choice if you’re itching for a Thai feast without having to fly to Thailand.
Vibe At Samsen
While some people might be deterred from Samsen’s 35-seat dining area, I found that the small space added to the restaurant’s authenticity. Despite the size, the dining area is brightly lit and subtly decorated, managing, somehow, to make it seem much bigger than it actually is. I’d recommend grabbing a seat at the bar/cooking station to get a behind-the-scenes experience.
You can tell a lot about a Thai restaurant based on their papaya/mango salad (or at least that’s what someone who knows Thai food would say..) and Samsen’s Green Mango Salad with Prawns (HK$108) tasted just like it would if I was sitting on a plastic chair at a food stall along the side of the road in Bangkok. However, what really impressed me was the Fried Marinated Pork Collar (HK$68) with a tomato and chili dip. Crispy yet tender, the pork collar was to die for and the dip added a new complexity of flavour.
My favourite main dish we had was the Stir Fried Fat Noodles with Chicken (HK$98). The flavours were all on point with the right amount of spice (and more on the side if you wanted a kick) – I could have literally ate the whole thing to myself. I’m usually not a huge fan of rice dishes for the sole fact that they fill me up far too quickly, but people at our table were keen on ordering the Wok Fried Rice with Crab Meat (HK$108), so we gave it a try and I’m so glad we did. The rice was surprisingly light yet full of flavour, and there was a good amount of crab meat found throughout. Samsen’s signature dish is the Wagyu Beef Boat Noodle (HK$128) with meatballs and vermicelli noodles. Having been to Thailand numerous times, I’d actually never heard of boat noodles before, so I was quite intrigued. The meat was incredibly tender, and the broth was rich and thick, though I’m still unsure as to whether I liked it or not.
So much yes goes to the Thai Mango Sticky Rice (HK$52) – Samsen buys and ships their mango’s directly from Thailand, so you know you’re getting the real deal. If you only have enough room for one dessert, the mango sticky rice should definitely be it. Another great dessert choice is the Young Coconut Ice Cream (HK$58) topped with toasted peanuts, shaved coconut meat, and sweet corn. The combination might sound odd, but trust me when I say this was such a satisfying and light treat.
If you’re looking for authentic Thai street food in Hong Kong, then Samsen is your spot. Cozy, friendly, great vibe, authentic food, reasonable prices.. What more can I say?!
68 Stone Nullah Lane
Tel: 2234 0001