We’ve been going to Kati since it opened way back in 2005. And in that time never had a bad meal. In fact, in that time it’s probably been my favourite restaurant on the island. Over the years I’ve recommended the place to dozens of people – both visitors to this site and people staying at our guesthouse and they’ve all loved it. From expat families who’ve lived in Thailand for 20 years and thought it was some of the best Thai food they’ve had in that time, to an American restaurateur who eats there every night of his holiday as he didn’t want to waste the opportunity to go through as much of the menu as he could to try to figure out how they did it.
Run by Mum and her two daughters, one of which is usually around plus several staff, they don’t do anything too over the top, complicated, or fanciful. But they do everything well – very well. The food is , mostly, Thai dishes that you’ll be able to get elsewhere. The decor is stylish without being overbearing and fussy. The menu keeps it simple, with brief descriptions of each dish plus the choice to have any dish with pork, chicken, beef, prawns, squid, fish, seafood or tofu and vegetables. So, ideal for vegetarians. Many of the dishes can also be made as spicy as you want them to be.
The secret of their success is in the way the food is made. With love . . . and using Mum’s home made curry pastes The vast majority of restaurants use ones straight out of a bottle – it’s cheap and saves a lot of preparation time. Everything is prepared from scratch with none of the shortcuts you might find in other restaurants. For example, if you order a fish then it’s going to take 20 – 30 minutes or so to arrive because that’s how long it takes to cook a fish. If you go to a restaurant, order a fish and it’s there in 10 minutes – you know it’s one that has been cooked earlier. So , don’t expect your food to arrive super quickly. When it arrives it will have been well worth the wait.
The menu also contains a good range of smoothies & unique cocktails. Again, all worth a try. The potent cocktails are better value than in many places. As in most Thai restaurants, there isn’t a huge dessert menu. Here the stars are the homemade ice-cream and the ‘Hidden Banana’.
It’s a small place, which seats around 40 people maximum and so during High Season is often packed at 7pm, either book ahead or eat a bit earlier or after 8.30pm to avoid the rush.
Prices are a bit higher than in many restaurants but are still cheaper than those you’d pay if eating bland Thai food in your resort’s restaurant.
Bottom line is that if you go there and don’t enjoy your meal, then you should stick to spaghetti bolognese and pie and chips as there’s really no hope for you.
And, if you enjoy the food, you can learn some of the tricks of the trade at Kati cooking school which is behind the main restaurant building.
Price: $$ – $$$
Location: Inland side of the road at the south end of Klong Prao village. 50 metres north of the turning for Centara Tropicana Resort.
These restaurant reviews are just my thoughts on a place at the time I visited. I’ll mention if I know the owner well or get any freebies. But for the most of the time I am happy to play tourist and don’t mention this site at all. Obviously it isn’t possible to sample every dish on the menu and the type of food you have for lunch will differ to evening. In addition, owners and more importantly chefs, can change and your experience may differ from mine. If it does, post a comment below.