Samui Wining & Dining
Affordable Indulgence

At Buco Restaurant & Baryou get exquisite atmosphere at a price that’s kind to your wallet.

22If there are fireworks over Chaweng – which there are most nights – Buco Restaurant & Bar is just the place to watch them from. Every table in the house is right on the seafront and looks over towards the twinkling lights of Chaweng. Only ten minutes from Chaweng, in Chaweng Noi, it’s just far enough away to be peaceful and close enough to be convenient.

    “Buco” means coconut in the Philippines. And that’s a fitting theme because the restaurant is right on the beach. It’s part of Le Murraya hotel, but unlike the hotel’s location in busy Chaweng, it couldn’t be easier to park at the restaurant. Not only can you plonk your transportation right outside, if there’s no space there they have their very own parking lot too. And it won’t take you long to find the restaurant either, as it’s on the main road – although it doesn’t seem like it once you’re inside the serene restaurant space.

    Buco’s wine menu is pretty extensive, ranging from Australia to Chile. But the real stars of the drinks menu are the cocktails. There are two happy hours at Buco, one from 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm and another from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. During this time you can grab a mojito or margarita for just 90 Baht a glass.

     Then, of course, the service needs to be first-class. The fine-dining managers on Samui really understand the importance of training their staff. And you can be assured that the staff you’ll meet in the island’s fine-dining restaurants will be great ambassadors of one of Thailand’s greatest national assets – its hospitality.The cuisine is dubbed international – and that it is – but there’s definitely an Italian leaning, as pastas and pizzas take up a large portion of the menu’s mains section. There are also grilled meats, fish and Thai food on offer.

 

 A salad like this certainly
dispels any idea that all
salads are boring..

 

      Yum Buco, one of their signature dishes, is an aromatic salad of mixed seafood tossed with tomatoes, cashew nuts and crispy shallots in a chilli and lime dressing. It’s so fantastically zesty that any taste buds that may have been sleeping will be standing to attention after a bite of this. And Buco doesn’t scrimp on the good stuff, either. In this dish you’ve got seven types of protein – yes, seven – including prawns, calamari, pork and crab. This diversity means that every mouthful brings a different flavour into the mix. A salad like this certainly dispels any idea that all salads are boring.

      General Manager Khun Khajohn Eakintumas recommended the calzone to us – a “half moon” pizza, with ham, salami, mushroom, mozzarella and emmental cheese – which we chose alongside the linguine vongole – pasta with fresh clams and a white wine sauce. The chefs at Buco make the dough for the pizzas and calzones fresh, which was obvious to us when we tasted our calzone with its juicy filling. We were pleased to find the pasta was tossed with ample herbs and a generous portion of large clams. It was also topped with oven fresh garlic bread, a nice surprise.

      The tricolour panacotta desert was infused with three flavours – mint, mango and coconut – and served in a large glass to really show off the colour transition. But the tiramisu was where, for us, the meal really shined. This huge pile of creamy goodness was so tasty it made us forget we were full. The top layer of cream was whipped so soft it was almost soufflé-like, and the textured cake beneath it had a kick of coffee so deliciously strong I think my pupils dilated.

      And what’s more? There are no nasty surprises at the end of them meal. Not only is the food and drink very reasonably priced at Buco, but there’s also no service charge. Perhaps they’re so confident you’ll love the food enough to tip of your own accord. And on this occasion, that assumption was correct.

 

Christina Wylie



 


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