Phuket restaurant - Mimmi's, Rawai/Naiharn Beach
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Mimmi's Restaurant in Rawai

Mimmi's, Rawai - Naiharn Beach
 Momos at Mimmi's

The residents of Nai Harn, in the south of Phuket, have been curious lately. To see a new development is, in itself, nothing unusual here. After all, there's a building boom on. But what was this strange white building with enormous silver water urns on the corner of Soi Saiyuan? A sauna? A fancy new shop? Well, as it turned out, it's Mimmi's, a brand new restaurant.

On the evening we went along, Mimmi's had been open only one week but word had obviously gotten around the neighbourhood pretty quickly as there was a lively ambiance in the place. Thomas, the owner, greeted us and sat down for a chat. In spite of looking distinctly Oriental, Thomas is - wait for it - Swiss German. His Tibetan family moved there when Thomas was just one year old.

Aren't coincidences supposed to come in threes? Maitre D, Khun Pin joined us and mentioned that she too had spent a long time in Switzerland. It transpired that all three of us had lived within five kilometres of each other, just outside Montreux at the same time.

This is Thomas' first venture into the catering business and his previous experience in textiles is reflected in the restaurant's d?cor. Bold yellows, oranges and navy blues stand out against the pastel terracotta floors. The bathrooms are impeccably Swiss in function and taste (light brown for the girls, black tile for the boys) and the general atmosphere is capped by some of the tastiest jazz and light funk you'll ever wish to hear in an eatery.
But what of the food? We started out with momo's, Tibetan fried raviolis with a soy sauce dip. Traditionally they're steamed, but Namphung, Thomas' Thai wife, found this combination too heavy on the stomach. Hence the new treatment and they were delicious. The beef filling was lightly spiced and the soy sauce complemented the shells perfectly.

Our main courses were a medium rare lamb filet with saut?ed potatoes and herbal butter along with "The Mermaid Plate', which consisted of shrimp, snapper and scallops in a white wine sauce with nicely turned out vegetables. To accompany this we chose a Nikiti Lichie French red. The lamb was tangy and yielding, the vegetables carefully presented and the seafood served in an extremely generous portion of sauce. You'd be forgiven to imagine that all this came to a pretty penny, but no. Mimmi's prices its food well below hotel rates yet competes in quality, ambiance, d?cor and delivery.

As if to prove the point, an extremely successful and well-known local restaurateur arrived and tucked in to a plate of pasta. This was the ultimate compliment for this newly opened eatery and said more than words can. As we left, the intimate electric harp music of Andreas Vollenweider - another Swiss German - drifted through the night air, enhancing the multi-lingual dinner conversations. If quality, impeccable d?cor and economy are the main ingredients for success then I predict that Mimmi's will be a rip roaring success. It ought to be.

43/48 Saiyuan Road. Rawai/Nai Harn.
Tel. 076 289 095

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- July Issue, 2002

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