Tuesday, December 6, 2016

BKK Express: Serving Affordable and Authentic Thai Food at Uptown Mall

BKK Express at Uptown Mall, Bonifacio Global City

Last weekend, I was invited to try BKK Express (Bangkok Express) at the Food Hall of the posh Uptown Mall in Bonifacio Global City (BGC). It was my first time at the said mall and I couldn’t help but rave about the place because it’s a great place to go food trippin’. People within the BGC are so lucky because they’ve got so many restaurants to explore and enjoy. Looks like I need to come here more often should I find myself in the said area. I guess I was fortunate to be invited by BKK Express, from the same company that brought us the well-loved Filipino buffet restaurant, Cabalen, to try their latest business baby which was more casual dining than its sister company, Soi. This is really timely because I’ve been having Thai food cravings lately since it’s been ages since I had eaten a really good Thai food.
The spacious Food Hall at Uptown Mall
BKK Express' Lemongrass Juice
BKK recently opened its doors to cater to foodies craving for authentic Thai foods without the need to travel to Bangkok. Located at the 4th level of Food Hall at Uptown Mall, it’s the newest concept store serving quality yet affordable Thai fare. 
Chef Thea and Mr. Roy Fontabla welcomes you to BKK Express

I’ve always been a huge fan of Asian cuisines particularly of Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese and Thai foods. So you guys can imagine my excitement when I came in early that Saturday morning to try the foods served at BKK Express.

One thing about BKK Express is that they make sure they serve authentic Thai foods. Yes, they fly in Thai ingredients and they even have Chef Thea from Thailand to head the BKK Express kitchen. “70% of the ingredients are imported from Thailand,” says Mr. Roy Fontabla, Area Manager for Soi and BKK Express. The rest of the ingredients are sourced locally. “We don’t tweak our recipes to suit the Filipino palate because this isn’t a fusion after all. However, we can make the level of spiciness according to the customer’s preference.”

I find these water bottles really cute with different messages on them!

According to Mr. Fontabla, BKK Express wants to debunk the myth that all Thai foods are spicy. “There’s a big misconception about Thai foods being all spicy. Contrary to what the public knows, Thai foods are known for balancing different tastes from sweet, sour, umami and spicy.

Okay so lemme share with you what I’ve had…

Noodle Dishes:

Singaporean Pad Thai
I am a fan of fresh noodles. I’m used to having Pad Thai that uses rice noodles but for this Singaporean Pad Thai, they used a different kind of noodle. It’s also a bit spicy for others. Well, it’s not really a big deal for someone like me who loves anything spicy. Apparently, this Pad Thai recipe came from Singapore where a chef used thin egg noodles instead of the usual ones. 

Fresh Egg Noodles with Roasted Pork

This noodle soup made with fresh egg noodles, marinated pork, chopped cilantro, spring onions and bokchoy was such comforting meal. I can imagine myself craving for this during rainy days or at times when I need to feel some love.  The soup is tasty on its own and the noodles had a nice chewy texture too. Let’s not forget the marinated sliced pork that comes with it, it tastes like it was marinated in hoisin sauce. They’re so good on their own too. Those who do not wish to eat rice can opt for BKK Express’ noodle variants.

Fresh Egg Noodles with Shrimp Wanton

At BKK Express, you have five kinds of Thai noodles to choose from—Thai Thai Noodle with Roasted Pork (Php 160) , Fresh Egg Noodles with Shrimp Wanton (Php 190), Thai Rice Noodles with Meat Balls (Php 190) , Fresh Egg Noodles with Shrimp Wanton and Roasted Pork (Php 180), and Fish Tom Yam with Thin Rice Noodles (Php 180 ).

Pad Thai for those who are not familiar is another Thai specialty rice noodle dish made with dried shrimps, bean sprouts, radish, chives, tofu and crushed peanuts in tamarind sauce. 

Pad Thai Crab Meat/Seafood
BKK Express offers several Pad Thai dishes such as Pad Thai Crab Meat (P250), Pad Thai Chicken (P220), Pad Thai Tofu (P190) aside from the one previously mentioned, Pad Thai Singaporean. 

Pad Thai Tofu

Pad Thai Chicken

For the adventurous: 

Khao Kluk Kapi or Bagoong Rice
Also known as Khao Kluk Kapi (Thai Fried Rice with Shrimp Paste), With a head-spinning number of flavours to play with, my tongue felt like an alchemist as I mixed and matched the different components of this dish in search of a perfect bite. Seriously, this is one of the best Bagoong Rice I’ve ever had. Not too salty, but just right. I’m giving this dish two-thumbs up!

Grilled Thai Isan Sausage

 The next dish reminds me of Korea’s Samgyupsal. BKK Express gives guests a chance to experience eating Grilled Thai Isan Sausage (P350). It’s like a Thai Longanisa which you had to wrap in lettuce leaves with some nuts, chili pepper, unripe mango sticks, fresh cilantro leaves and some slices of garlic. Be warned though that using the minced chilli can make it too spicy for some people. But this is such a must-try! Can I have some more please?
This is how the Grilled Thai Isan Sausage is eaten!

Thai Fried Rolls

As for the Thai Fried Rolls, need I say more? Yes, it tastes just like our Chinese-Filipino favorite fried spring rolls. But it's served with a tangy sweet and sour dipping sauce. 

This Chicken (as well as their Beef satay—sorry I wasn’t able to take a photo, it’s gone the minute it landed on our table! But I swear it’s a must-try!) satay is one of the table’s favourite as everyone kept reaching for more. Don’t be misled by the amount of sambal (chilli paste) that is served on the side. It’s not as spicy as you think it is. I simply love the soft melt-in-your-mouth texture of both the chicken and beef satay and believe me, I can finish the satay skewers all alone. Think about barbecue with some kick, this is similar to it. 


Other than the above delicious Thai dishes, one can also find Thai desserts to cap off your meal. BKK Express’ Sticky Rice Mango Sundae with Sherbet (P135) is an all-time favourite. It had two kinds of colored sticky rice (one white while the other is green colored), it’s served in a sundae cup with sliced mangoes, sherbet with coconut meat.

Among the desserts we’ve tried, I love their Water Chesnut with Crushed Ice and Toddy Palm (P125) the most. Made with Toddy Palm, a kind of Palmyra palm, it is clear and chewy. But it had some surprise crunch when you take a bite. It tastes so good I just wanna keep them popping inside my mouth. Not to mention it looks so colorful and in time for the Christmas season (noticed their colors, red and green?). 
BKK Express bloggers who tried their awesome Thai foods with Ms. Jam Lardera.

Thank you BKK Express for extending the food invitation and having us.
Disclaimer: This food review is honest and based on personal experience. No monetary reward or gift certificate is received for the said review. I was simply invited to a food tasting at BKK Express.


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