The Vibe: With six global locations; Zuma at the St. Regis Bangkok exudes a sophisticated and modern vibe. Designed by Noriyoshi Mauramatsu from Tokyo, the restaurant successfully captures the essence of the elements of nature with the contrasting textures of stone, wood, glass, and steel in a vibrant and warm environment. They boast no less than three open kitchen areas, including a traditional sushi bar and an aromatic charcoal robata grill. You will also find an ultra-luxurious private dining room decked out in red Thai silk, a sleek and contemporary lounge with comfy sofas adjacent to the see through wine cellar, and a unique air conditioned outdoor rock garden terrace where a live DJ sets the mood with sultry techno jazz. Zuma attracts a young and hip crowd of upwardly mobile business types and trend setters.
What To Eat & Drink: You are invited to dine "Izakaya style" (which allows dishes to be shared or enjoyed individually) and encouraged to create your own selection of sashimi instead of having pre-determined sets. Another special touch is that the sashimi is served with fresh wasabi which is grated at the table for a brilliantly authentic experience. Start off with the sumptuous Chu Toro (semi-fatty tuna belly), the delicate Kinmedai which is a seasonally available golden eye bream from Hokkaido, the tender Spot Prawns, and the blue skinned Saba which is a pacific mackerel. We also recommend the Hamachi which is sustainably sourced from a Japanese farm and the delectable Hote which is a sweet and tender scallop that is exquisite when paired with a crisp and fruity glass of Salomon & Andrew Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough NZ, 2011. Next try an order of their Crispy Calamari w/ Chili for something crunchy and light along with the fresh Edamame. For something different, we highly recommend the Grilled Yellow Tail Tuna Cheek which is a symphony of juicy smoky tender cheek meat with just a bit of salt and lemon. Its genius is in its simplicity and it is by far the favorite dish that we tried. For desert you must order the Jasmine Poached White Peach with Wild Strawberries & Peach Sorbet.
Insider Insights: Zuma has been a hot spot and a place to “be and be seen” since they first opened. According to Executive Chef Patrick Martens, seafood is flown in fresh twice a week from Tsukiji Market in Tokyo for optimal freshness. Zuma is great for having private parties and in the evening their air conditioned outside bar serves a separate late menu of light snacks and cocktails until 01:00AM. The wine cellar is one of the best in the city and it’s always a hip spot to chill out and relax. It does get busy on weekends so be sure to call ahead for reservations.