One food event I look forward to each year is a special dinner hosted by Malai Kitchen owners Braden and Yasmin Wages. The talented couple run what Yasmin calls an upscale mom and pop restaurant located in the West Village. For the past three years they have been open they have called upon their mentor Thai chef Paul Singhapong into their kitchen to create a special one of a kind Thai dinner. Do not feel left out that you did not attend this dinner because we gave you plenty of notice to buy seats before they sold out.
Now retired, Singhapong has worked in top kitchens throughout Dallas and San Francisco and serves as consulting chef for Malai. The chef’s name is synonymous for amazing Thai cuisine, and for a handful of guests we were enlightened a bit further into this special style of cookery. For this dinner Singhapong tapped into all the resources available, including a special fishmonger out of Louisiana, and even in the chef’s own garden where he grows his own herbs for just such special occasions.
The dinner was especially wonderful for me because this is the one time of year I am able to dine with Yasmin while her chef-husband is busy in the kitchen working beside Singhapong. She shared a few special stories with me and the media sitting around us, including the fact that the Wages are attending a special culinary conference in Mexico this October where they are recognized for their particular style of cuisine, and will be working beside Mico Rodriguez for a special demonstration in front of many elite chefs from around the world. We will share more information in the coming month about this special event they will be attending.
As for the dinner, it was truly amazing. The flavors that surround the Thai kitchen are truly some of the best to be found in any cuisine. These flavors range greatly from sweet, sour, spicy and definitely umami. Look for some of these dishes to possibly pop up on the Malai menu. The cuisine served at the Vietnamese-Thai inspired kitchen is some of the very best Dallas has to offer.
Check out the meal we shared last evening. Pay particular attention to the wine pairings, as they were extremely well thought out, and might be good for your own pairings at home. Do not be squeamish about the fish heads that were served at this meal, it is our job as culinarians to seek out the differences in cultures and cuisines. They also happened to taste remarkable.PEI Conway Royal Oyster, Nuoc Nom Mignonette Thai Mekong Shooter Pla Kung, Sweeet Prawn, Mint and Lemongras Ceviche 2011 Scapetta Hoy Phing, Banana Wrapped Grilled Bay Scallops and Red Curry Coconut 1999 Meursault Chardonnay Tom Yum Hua Pla, Hot and Sour Soup Made With Fishhead 2011 Livon Friulano, Collio, IT Kha Pong Dang Tod, Grilled Red Snapper with Crispy Corn Patty and Green Curry Sauce 2004 Clos du Vougot, Grand Cru Burgundy Koi Tod, Fried Coconut Tempura Bananas with Coconut Gelato 2011 Bergman Reisling Spatlese, Mosel, GR Weasel Coffee