‘Kin Dee’ means ‘eat well’ in Thai and this is a fitting name for this out-of-the-way restaurant up by Phuket’s Sarasin Bridge. Serving genuine Thai food in a beautiful setting, Kin Dee is a family-run restaurant with an ex five-star chef and her sisters at the helm.
Kin Dee is not a large place and has 12 bamboo and wooden tables in its dining area. Yet as it is open sided, it feels spacious and has fabulous views out over the adjacent mangrove swamp and estuary with light natural breezes to accompany the stand-alone floor fans. An unusual feature is a couple of palm trees adorned with bright purple orchids growing through the wooden decking floors and straight up through the roof! If you want to be closer to Nature when dining here you can choose to sit outside in one of the bamboo ‘salas’ (gazebos) down near the mangroves. Kin Dee has a unique, hidden-away feel to it that makes dining here an adventure and it certainly helps to know that you’re in good and capable hands.
Even though it’s quite a compact place, the menu is impressive and manages to fit in almost 50 selections and sub-selections of Thai dishes starting with the ubiquitous ‘Papaya pok-pok’ – so-named after the ‘pok-pok’ noise the mortar and pestle make when preparing this green papaya salad before adding fish sauce, lemon juice, cherry tomatoes and dried shrimp. In the salad department why not try a vitamin-filled ‘yum hua plee’ – banana blossom with coconut salad sauce. The Thai calamari dish is exactly what it says on the tin and is served with a fiery garlic pepper sauce. A definite plus point when dining at Kin Dee is that the chef will prepare your food as spicy or as bland as you want it. And some people absolutely love hot, spicy Thai dishes.
Kin Dee’s menu claims that tom yam goong is ‘Thailand’s national dish’ and it certainly is one of the spiciest so keep that boiled rice handy to quench the flames. For mains, try a whole deep-fried fish served with four local sliced herbs or perhaps a fried fish with curry paste and a definite must-try is duck in passion fruit sauce. Vegetarians take note – Kin Dee has an extensive 14-dish vegetarian section while families are well taken care of with a six-item kids’ menu comprising chicken nuggets and French fries, fish and chips and more.
Perhaps a better option for diners who are not familiar with Thai food is to order a set menu – from 700 baht for a veggie set menu to 2,500 baht for four diners, the choice is wide and delicious at Kin Dee. As for beverages, local beers are well represented along with a full range of cocktails (150 baht) and there’s even a blackboard recommending wine choices.
Kin Dee’s wait staff members are friendly and speak English; this place comes highly recommended, not only for its food (which is top quality) but also for its idyllic setting, unpretentious attitude and ‘undiscovered’ feel to it.
A good option for an educational and enjoyable morning in the Mai Khao area is to take a cooking class at Kin Dee. With a 10:00 pickup at your hotel, you can choose your own creations and will learn to cook four dishes. The almost three-hour class encompasses an introduction to the ingredients, food preparation and of course you can enjoy your meal at 13:00. Dishes include spicy mushroom soup, jungle curry, tom yam, steamed fish in spicy lemon sauce and much, much more. Book a day in advance. Minimum two people.
Kin Dee Restaurant
- Opening Hours: 10:30 – 22:00
- Address: 71/6, Thepkrasattree street(402) Mu 5 Mai Khao, Thalang, Phuket 83110
- Tel: +66 (0)82 814 8482, (0)80 392 3073
- How to get there: Head to Phuket’s most northern point – the Sarasin Bridge – then take a U-turn just before the Police Checkpoint. Then turn left down the next lane past after the green supermarket. Kin Dee is 150 metres on the right-hand side of the road. If you spend 500 baht or more Kin Dee will take you back to your hotel for free if it is local.