Everyone knows that Nuit Regular is the woman to see when it comes to Thai food. Her long list of eateries – Pai, Sabai Sabai and Sukhothai – are regularly packed and have won over the hearts of foodies across the city, not to mention celebrities like Shay Mitchell, Christine Cushing and Alvin Williams to name a few. And now, with her business partner and husband Jeff, Chef Regular is bringing Torontonians a piece of Thailand that they’ve never seen before.
Located inside the old Khao San Road is Chef Regular’s latest venture, Kiin. But with a major overhaul in design – everything from the floors to the drywall was gutted – what once was is no longer. The new space is bright and airy, with windows framed with stained glass and sandwiched between colonial-style shutters along the side wall, an homage to Chef Regular’s high school in Thailand.
The food also pays tribute to Chef Regular’s upbringing, with traditional Thai menu items that are meant to be shared and lingered over with family and friends. One of her favourites is Yum Tua Plu ($15), a salad made with Thai-imported wing beans, tossed in a house made chilli shrimp paste and served with a side of soft boiled eggs.
The Royal Platter ($12) is something rarely seen in Canadian-Thai restaurants and is made up of delicate dumpling-style bites that pop with flavour. Chef Regular tells us that this style dish is something that traditionally would have only been served to Thai royalty; a dying approach that she’s trying to revive.
Of the mains, the Mieng Pla ($32) is one of the more notable. A sea salt crusted whole sea bream is deconstructed table side to be wrapped in Thai kale and topped with green chilli sauce. Each bite is light and refreshing, yet savoury and delicious.
Another dish worth trying is the Gaeng Boombai Nua ($28), braised AAA Wellington County beef short rib with tamarind, field cucumber and pearl onions. Here served with Pad Buab Jae ($10), stir-fried angled gourd garlic and Thai basil, and jasmine rice, the beef is tender and layered with flavour.
The prettiest dish of all, however, has got to be the Khao Yum ($24). Served in a large gold bowl, Jasmine rice is tossed table side with white turmeric, long beans, lemongrass, sawtooth coriander, kaffir lime leaves, cucumber, toasted coconut, pomelo, fried chilli, sunflower sprouts, edible flowers, tamarind and soy beans.
For dessert, guests are treated to a plated selection of Chef Regular’s favourite Thai fruits, which change according to availability. Here we have mangosteen, rambutan and pomelo.
If you’re a lover of Thai flavours and are in the mood for something different, you’ll definitely want to make a stop at Chef Regular’s new restaurant in the near future.
Kiin is open at 326 Adelaide St. West, Monday to Friday from 11:30am to 3:00pm for lunch, and Monday to Sunday from 5:00pm to 11:00pm for dinner.
Have you tried Kiin yet? Which dish was your favourite? Let us know in the comment section or tweet us at @ViewtheVibe.