By Heidi Ng
COSMO Restaurant, the signature all-day dining venue at The Nai Harn Phuket has built a strong reputation as one of the island’s premiere dining destinations.
Executive Chef Mark Jones draws on 20 years of experience in Michelin starred restaurants and 5-star luxury resorts to create an eclectic culinary journey for food lovers, with dishes that focus on the freshest and finest ingredients from sustainable sources.
Staying in touch with the latest culinary trends while also maintaining the highest quality and offering classic tastes, The Nai Harn’s kitchen team recently enhanced and extended some of the delicious offerings at Cosmo, creating a new menu designed to deliver satisfaction that extends well beyond good cooking.
“Our number one rule when sourcing ingredients for Cosmo is to buy little and often, and only to use the best local and sustainable products. Wherever possible we source ingredients here in Thailand, which reduces our carbon footprint, promotes local business, and means we know exactly where the food is coming from,” explains Chef Mark Jones.
All the local seafood comes from Rawai gypsy fishing village located only 3km from the resort. The fishermen there use small day boats, catching only what they are able to sell and delivering to us up to twice a day. Meanwhile, most fruit and vegetables are sourced from the local farmers in Phuket, Chumpon, Hua Hin and Phang Nga provinces.
“Additional items come from the Royal Project in Chiang Mai where there’s a wonderful array of organic and free-range produce of outstanding quality. Our beautiful Kurobuta pork is also sourced in Chiang Mai, from a cruelty free, sustainable farm favoured for its fantastic marbling, outstanding flavour and juiciness,” adds Chef Mark.
To complement the wide array of fresh local flavours, the beef served at The Nai Harn comes from Western Australia and is dry aged for 30-35 days before being prepared by the master butchery team to enhance firmness and flavour. The resort’s Charcuterie is the only one of its kind on Phuket and showcases a range of magnificent meat products all made in house, as well as unique gourmet choices including house-made soft cheeses, natural probiotic yoghurts and rich fruit jams to complement the gluten-free, organic bakery items made using the hotel’s state-of-the-art ovens.
The health benefits of various foods are also carefully considered in the new Cosmo menu selections, with ingredients chosen for their nourishment value. A special section has been added catering specifically to wellness conscious diners, with no fat, dairy or cheese used in the dishes and a focus on raw ingredients and tasty nutritional meals high in vitamins, minerals, with proven curative properties.
“Healthy food should also feed the soul and in the new menu we use a wide range of beneficial ingredients, but always with a core philosophy that every dish should taste great,” explains Chef Mark.
To prove the point, the enticing dishes at Cosmo cater to a vast range of tastes and personal cravings. On the Thai side, the extensive menu covers everything from spicy Thai salads and appetizers to traditional soups, curries, noodle and wok-fried dishes, while the Western section features globally inspired choices that explore the best of the Mediterranean, Australia and, the Andaman Sea. All the dishes are clearly allergen coded, and the new wellness section is complemented by a special order section featuring exceptional dishes that require 24 hours advance order such as whole Boston lobster and Australian beef wellington for two.
Adventurous diners can start their flavoursome journey with a unique signature such as pumpkin, cumin and coriander veloute, topped with coconut cream and toasted pumpkin seeds – an original creation made by sweating pumpkin with onion, garlic along with cumin, then pouring in the water of freshly opened young coconut. They can follow this burst of vitality with an indulgent Australian Ribeye served with rigatoni of wild mushroom, porcini and black truffle, or indulge in fresh white flakey Andaman sea bass paired with a soup pistou – a seasonal green vegetable broth with potato and thick pesto. Then finish off with an indulgent Banoffee Pie, ‘The Nai Harn’ style, with homemade salted caramel ice cream.
“With a passion for quality ingredients, outstanding flavours and the absolute best in culinary creativity, we are taking resort dining to a whole new level at The NAI HARN, and the new menu at Cosmo demonstrates our ongoing commitment to provide the finest gourmet experience on Phuket,” says Frank Grassmann, General Manager.
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