Nonthaburi's Five Crossing menu proves it's not just for wine connoisseurs
First, it was the name that made no sense. Then it's the location that sounded too desolate to even fancy what the establishment would be like, let alone how the business could survive.
And when I arrived at the place (thanks to the GPS), situated in one of the nondescript commercial rows in the enormous Muang Thong Thani vicinity, my befuddlement escalated.
From the outside, Five Crossing, this week's subject of review, looked like a full-blown trattoria thanks to its Tuscan-styled terracotta walls, large arched window facade and handsome grapevine logo.
Stepping inside, however, I found it a rather intimate restaurant with a live music pub vibe.
A large bar, a small music stage and a Neapolitan pizza kitchen equipped with a brick oven cohabited the industrial-loft dining room.
The atmosphere at noon on the quiet Sunday that I visited was made folksy by tables of casual diners in laid-back attire.
To spare you from any presumptive distrust or misled drawback towards the restaurant my aforementioned statement may have caused, let me tell you now that my lunch there turned out worth driving out of town for.
All the distractions were outweighed by heartfelt cordiality of the service staff and utmost dedication of the chefs.
Five Crossing first opened in 2016 as a wine-centric eatery. To this day it still serves as a popular gathering and dinner venue for in-the-know wine lovers.
Of course, there has to be a lot more on offer here than just the oenophilia grace.
And just by the size of the fully illustrated menu, you can tell that the people here are as much caring about the kitchen.
It offers more than 100 items of comforting Italian dishes, basically pizza and pasta and main meat and seafood dishes, with Maine lobster and Australian beef as the specialities.
For starters, there are two dozen options of soup, salad and appetisers to choose from.
Beef carpaccio salad (380 baht) impressively kicked off my meal.
Of it, the sheer-red paper-thin slices of Wagyu tenderloin -- so delicate and soft yet very juicy and flavourful -- were given a delicious balance by a pungent wild arugula salad dressed with house-concocted balsamic vinaigrette and shaved Parmesan.
Truffled mushroom soup (220 baht) was suggested to me as being the restaurant's all-time best seller. The thick and delectable concoction of mushroom puree and black truffle was accompanied by a golden slice of garlic bread.
The restaurant's speciality, grilled jumbo-sized Maine lobsters.
Pasta is made fresh in-house and paired with a variety of gourmet recipes and sauces.
Interesting options include tagliatelle with duck and lamb Bolognaise; squid-ink spaghetti seafood with garlic and chilli; and spaghetti chilli vongole with clams, garlic and white wine.
The tagliatelle truffled carbonara (380 baht) that we sampled is among the most popular.
In a generous portion, the perfectly-cooked ribbon pasta came drenched in truffle cream sauce seethed with shrimp, mushroom and crispy bacon bits and topped with a 63-degree egg, which lent a creamy and yolky consistency to the dish.
I found the wood-fired pizza here some of the most satisfactory renderings Nonthaburi could have offered. The crust, prepared with fresh dough, was bubbly chewy.
The four seasons pizza offering the four most popular topping options at one go.
More than two dozen choices including calzone truffle; proscuitto and funghi; primavera crema; and caprisiosa.
Yet highly recommended is four seasons pizza (480 baht), showcasing the restaurant's four most popular topping options, Parma ham, salmon, pepperoni and black olives.
Only jumbo-sized Atlantic lobsters (2,900 to 3,100 baht per lobster) from Maine, US, are prepared here.
To ensure the freshness, there's a specially-built, temperature-controlled tank, where the crustaceans hibernate until cooked.
There are quite a few ways to enjoy the crustacean here.
The all-time best-selling truffled mushroom soup with garlic bread.
You can have it sauteed with garlic, chilli and angle hair pasta in lobster stock; or baked with truffle bechamel and cheese as Lobster Thermidor.
But should you be in for a maximal photogenic and hands-on experience, go for grilling. And that's what we had.
The lobster, which proved succulent with a nice springy consistency and sweet-tasting meat, came with a thick butter sauce infused with lobster tomalley.
The Australian beef, representing the top end of selection is 450-day age Jack Creek's Wagyu, is served on a sizzling metal plate.
However, I opted for the lower end, the Australian grain-fed Black Angus rib-eye (1,290 baht) and was gratified with the flavoursome quality and pleasant chewiness of the beef.
The chocolate lava cake with vanilla ice cream.
There's a section offering Thai dishes. Of it, grilled lamb fillets with jaew sauce and sticky rice (450 baht) proved a great decision.
Nicely wrapping up the meal was a lovely platter of perfectly-baked chocolate lava cake with lemon whipped cream, berries and vanilla ice cream (220 baht).
Live bands and singers perform on weekend evenings. The restaurant has two large private rooms which can accommodate a total of 50 guests. Delivery and takeaway service are also available.
The tagliatelle truffled carbonara with 63-degree egg.
- Five Crossing Eatery & Winery
- 411 Bond Street, Muang Thong Thani Nonthaburi
- Call 064-936-5666
- Open 3–11pm (Monday-Friday) and 11am-11pm (Saturday-Sunday)
- Park along the street
- Most credit cards accepted