The first few things that grab my attention at Thai Hou Sek, located around the corner from the Taman Tun Dr Ismail wet market, are tall glass panels, busy lunchtime chatter and a brightly lit dining hall.
Pop-artworks like a neon-elephant silhouette set against a black canvas, a comical action bubble surrounding the words "Thai Food" and an Andy Warhol Campbell Soup inspired painting add flair to the place.
The restaurant feels fresh, young and eager to make its mark. And in many ways, it is all those things.
Built upon the idea of combining Thai and Chinese cuisines, Thai Hou Sek is a play on the Cantonese word for “very tasty Thai”. The restaurant welcomes a second outlet at Greens Terrace after achieving success at One Utama.
Food is catered towards groups, proving that the more, the merrier.
Thai Hou Sek serves the crowd favourite red tom yum, but only available at this outlet is Tom Kha Seafood Soup, a white milky version of the classic.
Although it looks different to its red coloured cousin, the addition of coconut milk makes the usual fiery red soup look less menacing and more inviting, don't let your guard down. The soup manages to hit that sour-spicy sweet spot but won't numb your mouth.
Dishes here are designed to go with rice and the restaurant's green curry prawn surprisingly has a very satisfying taste with a herbal hint. Here's a tip – use the curry sparingly as it may overpower the flavours of the other dishes.
BKK braised pork on the other hand, is succulent, well-seasoned and ticks all boxes in terms of flavour. Eating this brings nostalgic sensations of the many times I had this personal favourite on the streets of Bangkok.
To round out the meal, Thai eggplant and siu yuk is served alongside four angle beans and dried shrimps.
The tasty stir-fried four angle beans and dried shrimps manages to capture the heat of the wok, showcasing the restaurant's use of Chinese cooking techniques.
Stir fried Thai eggplant with Chinese roasted pork is the dish for you if you are one of those people who needs a serving of meat with their greens. The siu yok does a great job at encouraging you to eat your greens.
While the menu does feature a small selection of rice and noodles for the solo eater, dining with others gives patrons a greater selection of delectable dishes to enjoy and an excuse to take advantage of the restaurant’s Happy Hour.