Brunch. The word conjures up alluring food served neither too early, nor too late, more or less just when you want it. Along with perhaps a delicious coffee, shake or even a cocktail. Spanning two meals, brunch has you covered, whatever your needs and fancies.
And what better than to indulge yourself with a luxury brunch than when you are visiting or residing on a tropical island?Brunch might seem to some to be an urban affair, but once you see it set up under the palms fronting a blue sea, then you’ll agree that it’s just made for the summery, idyllic days of Thailand. Samui is good at brunch – it’s popping up more and more at the island’s hotels, restaurants and beach clubs. Once hard to find, now the challenge is to make sure you’re attending one that meets all your needs.
What sets apart the brunch at Coast Beach Club & Bistro, is the fact that the event is geared towards socializing rather than partying. Though there’s music it’s in the form of a solo acoustic guitarist, Michel Boghers, who sets a mood that’s laid-back. As you may know, some brunches are way more party-oriented, where the music’s loud and the vibe is a kind of daytime version of a night-club. Those who attend the brunch at Coast are after something quite different: the chance to socialize, enjoy a very leisurely few hours or just unwind after perhaps a busy week at work. Incidentally, the brunch is attended by quite a few general managers of the island’s resorts – just the kind of people who recognize exactly what constitutes great food and drink.
Coast is located at Centara Grand Beach Resort Samui, one of the island’s premier resorts. You’ll also find quite a few children having brunch here, as it’s ideal for them, too. What’s the draw for them? For a start there’s so much good food that even the pickiest of eaters will find something they like, especially as they have their own menu, too, making life a lot easier. But just as important, with the resort’s privilege card, they and their parents get to use the swimming pool, which is one of the largest on Samui. The card also entitles holders to a hefty 25% discount.
The food is truly magnificent. Whereas some brunches can be summed up as a late and rather apologetic breakfast, this one’s a real treat. It contains dozens of items, each prepared to perfection. Although brunch is too often simply a buffet with over-reliance on chafing dishes, here it’s rather different. Wherever appropriate, dishes are cooked to order, and there’s a whole array of these. So, for example, if you want a slice of pizza, you simply order it – you won’t find it waiting out in the hot sun becoming ever more gloopy in the heat. Simply attract the attention of the staff who will be walking around, and they’ll pass your order onto the chef. There are all sorts of dishes that you can order, including a mixed bruschetta with goat’s cheese, wild mushrooms and beet, then various selections of beef, chicken, soft-shell crab and pulled pork, spaghetti carbonara or a fried green papaya salad with prawns.
You’ll find a salad bar where everything’s kept cool and crisp and where you can find classic salads, Moroccan couscous, Asian-style vegetables as well as cured salmon. Seafood is also to be found aplenty at Coast, and you can savour delicacies such as local prawns, New Zealand mussels, oysters and squid and snow crab. There’s also a live paella station and freshly-caught local fish that are grilled to your liking.
Speaking of grilled food, meat lovers are well-catered for, and they’ll find roasted lamb shoulder, beef picanha, strip loin and short ribs, breast of duck, roasted chicken and all manner of sausages. There are a variety of different sauces to go with the meats including béarnaise, mint, apple, red wine and mushroom sauces. Drinks abound, and there’s an aperitif station featuring Ketel One vodka Bloody Marys along with all the condiments.
If you’re more in the mood for breakfast, then the brunch offers many different styles of eggs that you can order, from a simple omelette to truffle scrambled egg on brioche or smoked salmon with eggs. Almost ten different breads are served at the brunch. You’ll also find a selection of cheeses, cured hams and meats. Whatever you decide to eat, keep in mind that Coast has some extremely decadent desserts waiting for you. These include a live station featuring handmade Sicilian cannoli, tiramisu, rum babas and profiteroles.
Coast is managed by Guido Campigotto, a seasoned restaurateur. He’s an Italian from London who ran several top-notch restaurants there, before moving to Samui to join Centara. He’s set up Coast to be a very relaxed venue offering as he says, “top level food and drink – but at affordable prices.” Not content with just that, he’s extremely thoughtful when it comes to all the different types of guests that he welcomes. You’ll seen this when you look at the brunch menu, which uses no less than five distinct symbols that mark various food-stuffs. Foods that contain alcohol, gluten, pork or nuts are all highlighted, as are items that are suitable for vegetarians. So, no matter if you have food allergies or dietary restrictions, Coast is definitely one place where you don’t need to wonder about what, exactly, is in your food.
Coast’s Family Sunday Brunch is served from 12:30 pm until 4:30 pm, Sundays only, of course. Prices start at 1,590 baht (excluding 10% service charge and 7% VAT). This includes free flow soft drinks. Children below the age of 12 are half price. (There are other price tiers including alcoholic beverages, cocktails and even a half bottle of Veuve Cliquot.)
Coast is open daily for lunch and dinner and everything in between. And then there’s the entertainment too; Coast offers a fire show on Mondays, a DJ on Tuesdays, violin and singer on Wednesdays, acoustic guitar and singing on Thursdays and a DJ on Friday and Saturdays. With its wonderful seaside location in one of Samui’s longest-established resorts, amazing food and a tropical ambience, Coast ticks all the boxes when it comes to excellent dining – and, of course, great family times.
For reservations or further information, telephone 0 7723 0500.