SOI 47 sits on the ground floor of a HDB block in Toa Payoh. SOI 47 had its beginnings only in the early months of 2017. It prides itself as a food establishment that does not utilise MSG in its food preparation. Consequently, some may find that the flavours are not as strong as many other Thai restaurants. I personally didn’t find it to be the case, instead I appreciate their insistence on not using MSG for health reasons. I also appreciate that SOI 47 offers dishes affordably priced, many pegged at around $5.
For $10, this crowd-favourite Claypot Tang Hoon with Prawns comes with at least five plump prawns. Despite them being frozen prawns, they did not possess the kind of artificial springiness that commonly follows as a matter of course. Our tang hoon was not clumpy and came with the right amount of moisture; it might be worth emphasising to the waitstaff that you’d like it not to be too dry, given that it is not difficult to overcook them. Note: You might want to avoid this dish if you aren’t a fan of having hints of sweetness in a main course.
The eatery sources its fish from the kelong once every other day. We were told that this channel is a risk because there is a possibility that some fishes would have already been dead for a while before reaching the restaurant. This information came without their knowing of our opinion of the Steamed Seabass with Thai Lime Sauce ($19), which is that the fish did not taste the freshest. The meat was mushy to the extent that it has no bite at all – or maybe it was because of the acidic thai lime sauce that breaks down the meat, but as pictured, the sauce is only poured into it at the table. So this I am not sure.
The Tom Yum Soup with Seafood ($6.80) could be a lot spicier as a start, but that can be adjusted rather easily. They also offer the red, cream style, and Tom Kha, the coconut cream version.
The quintessential Thai beverage and dessert respectively, Soi 47’s delivery of the Iced Thai Milk Tea ($3) and Mango Sticky Rice ($5) was much to my liking. The former is one that boasts a sufficiently strong tea-bitterness flavour (although I have tasted stronger ones) while not being overly sweet, like the many unfortunate ones I have had; the latter holds a warm mass of sticky rice, doused with a generous amount of coconut sauce and set with a row of sliced mango. I feel that it was as good as it could get; it would have been perfect if the mangoes were sweeter, but of course, it is not very fair of me to compare it with mangoes I had in Bangkok.
For the fun of it, and for the beautification of the environment, the owners at SOI 47 put in much effort into maintaining their herbs garden. Herbs garden is not a common sight in our daily lives, so it is well worth the time talking to the staff about it. I am pretty positive they will be happy to share their passion to interested diners.
While I wouldn’t say that SOI 47 is the best Thai restaurant in Singapore, I have no doubt it is one of the most value-for-money ones around. And if I am in the area, a re-visit would be in place.
What’s worth ordering:
Claypot Tang Hoon with Prawns
Thai Iced Tea
Mango Sticky Rice