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Review: TOM YAM Thai Restaurant in Brussels, Belgium

By monika - January 29, 2016 (Updated: February 13, 2016)

TOM YAM Thai Restaurant in Brussels, BelgiumA new restaurant in Ixelles is taking Thai cuisine to a new level. Monika reviews TOM YAM by Walkin’Thai, in Brussels, Belgium.

Keeping with the popularity of Thai cuisine, Brussels has a lot of Thai restaurants, varying from reputed brand names to nondescript restaurants serving stale meats dunked in viscous sauces and curries in the name of Thai food. Thai cuisine celebrates the fusion of different flavours: sour, sweet, salty, spicy, and bitter in an amicable way and this hallmark transforms the food in TOM YAM restaurant from ordinary fare to an incredible dining experience!

We had previously tried the food at Walkin’Thai, near Place Flagey, (where we love their Pad Thai) and couldn’t wait to try out their new restaurant, TOM YAM. The restaurant has been recently renovated after Bo and Mathieu, the duo from Walkin’Thai, took over the space. While the focus in Walkin’Thai was to recreate a street food experience (with chairs and hygiene in place), TOM YAM focuses on bringing the essence of real Thai food to your table in a refined setting. The emphasis is on fresh, good food without the addition of the controversial compound monosodium glutamate, frequently abbreviated as MSG.

Bo and Matthieu, the duo behind WalkinThai and TOM YAM

Bo and Matthieu, the duo behind Walkin’Thai and TOM YAM

We visited TOM YAM one evening. It’s conveniently located in Ixelles and has its own parking/valet service, which is helpful on busy Chaussee de Booendael. What struck me first was the dramatic, but elegant décor. The restaurant is spread over two floors and is wonderfully done in shades of black, neutral gold and beige, with wonderful additions of Thai wall art and brassware.

The striking interiors of TOM YAM Thai Restaurant in Brussels, Belgium

The striking interiors of TOM YAM Thai Restaurant in Brussels, Belgium

My other half wanted to try out a Thai beer while I asked for a mojito. The Singha beer was mild whereas the mojito had all the right punch. The drinks were served with crunchy wafers that tickled our sweet and sour taste buds at the same time.

Punchy mojito that I had to try after I saw the inviting bar corner

Punchy mojito that I had to try after I saw the inviting bar corner

The next on our menu was the Sate Kai or grilled chicken skewers with satay sauce. I loved the satay sauce (I am partial to it anyway) and it went perfectly well with the chicken skewers. My other half is a great enthusiast for soups and ordered the Tom Kha Kai or chicken soup with coconut milk. This was absolutely heavenly, with flavours of fresh coconut milk, lemongrass and lime zest offering a perfect base for  the chicken, button and shiitake mushrooms.

Grilled chicken skewers with satay sauce and the Tom Kha Kai soup

Grilled chicken skewers with satay sauce and the Tom Kha Kai soup

We then asked for ‘orange and ginger roasted duck’ and ‘Massaman curry’ for the main course. Massaman curry is a spicy preparation, using dried spices. The curry is then mellowed with the addition of coconut milk, peanuts, and waxy potatoes. Though the curry did not have the smooth, creamy texture I was expecting, it had a nice aromatic flavour, was rightly spiced, and the shrimps in the curry were pink, fresh and had a bit of a bite. The duck can be a tricky bird, but it was roasted well with a crisp outside and a soft inside and was served with slivers of orange and ginger in a soy sauce glaze.

Massaman curry served with rice

Massaman curry served with rice
Orange and ginger roasted duck

Orange and ginger roasted duck

To continue with my ‘coconuty’ theme for the day, I chose a coconut cake for dessert.

The cake was richly flavoured with coconut milk, had generous coconut shreds and an icing of toasted coconut. The dessert was truly divine and raised our dinner experience to another level…definitely recommended.

Coconut cake&yum!

Coconut cake…yum!

Tom Yam is an excellent initiative, as the food is fresh, has low-calorie and vegetarian options as well. They will soon be introducing a lunch menu. The prices are fair and the restaurant is perfect if you are planning to host a small party for friends or family. They also have a terrace that can be used during the summers. If you are feeling lazy, you can even call or order online and the food will be delivered to your doorstep!

If you prefer to eat at the restaurant, you can reserve a table at Tom Yam via TheFork.be. They’ve even got a special on now for Valentine’s day!

Book your table at TOM YAM online now

TOM YAM
Chaussee de Booendael/ Booendaelsesteenweg 341,
Ixelles 1050,
Brussels

TOM YAM Thai Restaurant in Brussels, Belgium

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Monika

Monika

Monika Lamba Saini is an Indian expat, in Brussels, with her husband and an amiable, energetic toddler. Trained as a doctor and specialised as a pathologist, cancer research brought her to Brussels. When she is not working on molecular profiling of different types of thyroid carcinomas, she likes to cook, read and listen to music. Her favourite part of the day is definitely the time spent with the family. She is the author, co-author and peer reviewer of many national and international scientific publications. She is an avid foodie, loves to travel, explore new places, new cultures and also loves to write about them!
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