The Songkram Experience
Nestled between what was the old Blu restaurant and Guru Burgers and Crepes in Sugar Land’s Town Center is a little piece of Thailand. You might miss as we did, passing right by and having to retrace our steps. And if you did, the loss would be yours. Songkram is true, elevated Thai cuisine. Once actually part of Blu Restaurant, Chef Jett and Chef Jira who are also husband and wife, have converted a third of Blu to serve authentic and flavorful modern Thai food. Chef Jett offers up the appetizers and main courses, and Chef Jira follows up with an amazing desert finish.
Our meal started with appetizers including Nuer Sawan, heavenly beef with sriracha sauce, and Gong Ka-Bok, chicken and shrimp crispy roll with pickle plum. For the main course we were served Kang Phet Ped Yang, clay pot crispy duck with curry and pineapple. But the dish that truly brought Thailand to the table was the Pla Sam Ros, crispy whole red snapper. This was not only the most favorable part of the meal, but also the most beautifully presented dish. The entire snapper is deep fried and curved around a bounty of fish and vegetables over a flavored sauce. There is more than enough for two people, even more if you eat the entire fried portion of the fish. Chef Jira was not to be outdone and presented a Molten Chocolate Cake and a Lychee & Jackfruit Crème Brulee.
What Houston has to offer in the way of Thai cooking is Westernized, watered-down fare that you can find in any major US city. Relegated to choosing between a set of standard curries with a “spicy” factor of 1-5, this is about as far away from real Thai food as you can get. Those who’ve had the privilege of actually tasting food in country know spiciness always comes second to flavor. The freshness of basil, cilantro, and other herbs thrown in at the very end of the cooking process speaks to that fact. This is something that Chefs Jett and Jira know well.
Story by Sandeep Khandelwal