In a contemporary setting, Pink Elephant Thai Restaurant might be cooking up a storm in Ipoh. With an experienced chef from Thailand and an extensive menu, Pink Elephant is everything one could want from a Thai Restaurant.
They’ve got the classics, the fusion and food with a twist too. Food stay true to authentic flavors. When it calls for lemongrass, lemongrass shall be intoxicating; when it calls for fish sauce, fish sauce shall be impossible to miss.
Our very first drink – the butterfly pea (RM 7) already set to impress with its stunning violet. The flower is light in flavor, accentuated by a dash of lemon and honey.
For salads, expect to see uncommon ones such as the Crispy Catfish Salad (Yum Pla Duck Foo, RM 20). You might be wondering, uh, where is the fish ? It’s right in front of you, in the form of airy and puffy fish floss crisps that blanket atop shredded mangoes and lettuce. The nutty cashew nuts and the acidic chili lime dressing add complexity to flavors.
Besides having a myriad of ingredients – dried shrimps, cucumbers, birds eye chili, lemon grass, cashew nuts, roasted coconuts, onions, etc, that the betel leaf wrap comprises of, the intricate palm syrup sauce makes the ensemble even more ravishing (Miang Kam, RM 15). (This item is currently not on the menu but available for order).
Two more items that are also not on the menu but will be coming soon include the Spicy Smoked Salmon (Yum Salmon, RM 28) and Spicy Smoked Salmon on Toast (RM 15) – thanks to the chef’s years of experience in France that enables him to create Thai-French fusion dishes.
Seafood is Pink Elephant’s stronghold. Order any seafood dish and you shall not be disappointed. Deep-Fried Siakap with a flying tail in the air (Pla Kra Phong Rad Sos Ma Kham, seasonal price) is conveniently cubed and smothered with a rich yet not overwhelming tamarind sauce.
Bee hoon is an excellent candidate to pair with Yellow Curry Crab (Kaeng Pu Mee Luack) (RM 35), with its ability to mop up the kaffir-lime-leaf-laced curry; not to mention how indulging it is when the crab is already de-shelled.
Fleshy squid sure is a crowd-pleaser. This one comes with a twist too as Pink Elephant uses an unexpected ingredient – the salted egg yolk, to the dish (Pla Muek Phad Kai Kem, RM 34).
Various types of tom yum are available at Pink Elephant – in red paste or clear soup. The red Seafood Tom Yum (Tom Yum Thalay Namkhon) is robust and creamier than usual because of the addition of coconut milk (Small RM 28, L arge RM 42).
If you are looking for something utterly fresh, order the prawn ceviche (Goon Chae Nam Pla, RM 35, which is again not on the menu but available for order). I didn’t try it at Pink Elephant but I had it at T & K Seafood in Bangkok Chinatown. It’ll look raw, very very raw, but fret not, the acid from the lime will cure the prawns so they won’t taste as raw as they look.
Thoroughly infused, the lemongrass Chicken (Gai Tord Tra Krai) exudes nothing but the full flavors of lemongrass, from left, right and center (RM 15.)
Pineapple Fried Rice (Kao Pad Supparos, RM 17) tossed with prawns, cashew nuts, yellow raisins and dark raisins is simple yet satisfying.
For an (extremely) sweet ending, try the Durian Soup with Sticky Rice (Kao Naew Turian, seasonal, RM 12). The sticky rice was a tad dry on its own, but when taken with the magnificently creamy durian puree, the dessert is a memorable one.
Looking a bit like sushi, Thai-Style Kaya with Sticky Rice (RM 7) wins hearts.
** This post is brought to you by Pink Elephant
More Info: Pork Free
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Address: C-G-2 Greentown Square, Jalan Dato Seri Ahmad Said, Ipoh, Perak
Opening Hours : 12 pm – 3 pm. 6.30 pm – 10.30 pm. Closed on Mondays.