Santiburi Koh Samui, nestled on the idyllic north shore of Samui Island, has long been a sanctuary for luxury seekers and discerning travellers.
In its ongoing pursuit of excellence, the resort is set to elevate the culinary experience to new heights with the arrival of Chef Chumpol Jangprai, the culinary virtuoso behind Bangkok’s renowned R-Haan Restaurant, which garnered two Michelin stars in 2023.
This culinary extravaganza, aptly named “From Michelin Stars to Samui Skies,” promises an unforgettable 12-course Southern Thai dining experience, featuring locally-sourced ingredients prepared by Chef Chumpol himself.
A Culinary Celebration: A 12-Course Southern Thai Set Menu
From the 9th to the 11th of December 2023, coinciding with Santiburi’s 31st anniversary, Chef Chumpol will welcome guests to the enchanting Sala Thai, the resort’s original and legendary restaurant that has been at the forefront of Thai cuisine in Koh Samui for over three decades. Under the theme “The Legend of Thai Cuisine in Samui,” diners will embark on an epicurean journey featuring a carefully curated 12-course Southern Thai set menu.
The menu boasts a fusion of six signature dishes that have propelled R-Haan to the pinnacle of Thai gastronomy, complemented by six new creations specially crafted by Chef Chumpol for this celebratory occasion. Highlighting the finest local and seasonal ingredients sourced from Koh Samui and its surrounding regions, each dish is a testament to culinary artistry, prepared and presented amidst the resort’s lush tropical gardens.
Savouring Southern Delights: A Culinary Odyssey
The gastronomic voyage commences with a curated selection of light amuse-bouches, setting the stage for the culinary delights ahead. Guests are then transported on an immersive journey to Southern Thailand’s farms, fields, and fisheries, where Chef Chumpol has sourced sustainably harvested delicacies.
Expect to indulge in Surat Thani oysters adorned with Royal Project caviar and seafood sauce, succulent Gulf of Thailand lobster prepared in a rich tom yum bisque, black grouper cooked sous-vide with a Champagne and lemongrass sauce, Surat Thani squid complemented by Chaiya salted egg espuma, and Nakhon Si Thammarat Angus beef, chargrilled and served in a spicy clear curry sauce.
However, the crowning jewel of this delectable menu is the Southern-style braised pork belly and egg in brown sauce—a dish that holds a special place in Chef Chumpol’s heart, as it was his very first recipe, perfected over the years.
The Art of Culinary Creation: A Deeper Dive
To truly appreciate the culinary genius behind each dish, it’s essential to understand Chef Chumpol’s philosophy and dedication to his craft. His culinary journey began at a young age, driven by a passion for crafting highly authentic Thai recipes rooted in traditional wisdom passed down through generations. This devotion to indigenous ingredients, harmonizing flavours with herbs, spices, and seasonings, and drawing inspiration from Thai culture earned R-Haan two Michelin stars for four consecutive years from 2020 to 2023.
Chef Chumpol’s commitment to authenticity and excellence is evident in every aspect of his creations. For example, the Surat Thani oysters, topped with Royal Project caviar and seafood sauce, showcase his dedication to sourcing sustainable and local ingredients. It’s not merely about taste but also about supporting local communities and preserving the environment.
The succulent Gulf of Thailand lobster, prepared in a rich tom yum bisque, exemplifies Chef Chumpol’s skill in combining traditional Thai flavours with a modern twist. The tom yum bisque, a Thai classic, takes on new depth and complexity under his expert hands.
The black grouper, cooked sous-vide with a Champagne and lemongrass sauce, reflects Chef Chumpol’s innovative approach to cooking techniques. Sous-vide cooking ensures that the fish is perfectly cooked, tender, and full of flavour, while the Champagne and lemongrass sauce adds a touch of sophistication.
Chef Chumpol’s use of Surat Thani squid, complemented with Chaiya salted egg espuma, demonstrates his ability to balance textures and flavours. The espuma, a light and airy foam, contrasts beautifully with the tender squid, creating a harmonious dish that delights the senses.
Finally, the Nakhon Si Thammarat Angus beef, chargrilled and served in a spicy clear curry sauce, showcases Chef Chumpol’s mastery of Thai spices. The bold and aromatic curry sauce enhances the rich flavour of the Angus beef, resulting in a dish that is both comforting and exhilarating.
A Culinary Journey with Heart: The Southern-style Braised Pork Belly & Egg
Perhaps one of the most evocative dishes on the menu is the Southern-style braised pork belly and egg in brown sauce. This dish holds a special place in Chef Chumpol’s heart, as it represents his culinary roots and the beginning of his culinary journey. It is a dish he has perfected over the years, and it’s a testament to his commitment to preserving and celebrating Thai culinary traditions.
The slow braising of the pork belly in a rich and flavourful brown sauce results in meat that is tender, succulent, and infused with layers of complex flavours. The addition of the egg, with its silky yolk, adds a luscious and comforting element to the dish. It’s a dish that tells a story, connecting diners to the essence of Southern Thai cuisine and Chef Chumpol’s personal culinary history.
A Sweet Farewell: Celebrating Koh Samui’s Finest Coconuts
Naturally, this exquisite culinary adventure concludes on a fresh and sweet note, with a dessert that highlights the finest coconuts from Koh Samui. Coconuts are a quintessential ingredient in Thai cuisine, and Chef Chumpol’s dessert pays homage to this tropical delight.
The use of Koh Samui’s coconuts ensures that the dessert is not only delicious but also a celebration of the island’s unique flavours. Whether it’s in the form of coconut milk, coconut cream, or freshly grated coconut, the coconut takes centre stage in this dessert, creating a symphony of tropical sweetness that lingers on the palate.
Chef Chumpol Jangprai: A Maestro of Thai Cuisine
Chef Chumpol Jangprai’s culinary journey is a testament to his dedication, expertise, and passion for Thai cuisine. His journey began at a young age, driven by a deep-rooted love for the culinary traditions of Thailand. His commitment to preserving and elevating these traditions led to the recognition of R-Haan as a culinary powerhouse, with two Michelin stars awarded for four consecutive years from 2020 to 2023.
Chef Chumpol’s philosophy revolves around crafting highly authentic recipes that honour the traditional wisdom of Thai cuisine. This entails using indigenous ingredients, meticulously balancing flavours with herbs, spices, and seasonings, and drawing inspiration from the rich tapestry of Thai culture.
His culinary prowess extends beyond the kitchen as he continues to push boundaries and innovate within the realm of Thai gastronomy. Chef Chumpol’s commitment to sustainable sourcing and supporting local communities underscores his role as a responsible and forward-thinking chef.
In his own words, Chef Chumpol expresses his excitement about being a part of Santiburi Koh Samui’s 31st-anniversary celebrations. Koh Samui, with its charming ambience and abundance of famous ingredients, provides the perfect backdrop for his culinary creations. He highlights the use of locally sourced produce, including coconut milk from Koh Phangan, turmeric from Surat Thani, and the freshest seafood from the Gulf of Thailand.
Chef Chumpol extends a warm invitation to all food enthusiasts to join this extraordinary fine dining experience in December, promising an unforgettable journey through the flavours of Southern Thailand. His passion for Thai cuisine and his commitment to excellence guarantee an experience that will leave a lasting impression on diners.
Mr Giulio Stix: The Visionary General Manager
Mr Giulio Stix, the General Manager of Santiburi Koh Samui, plays a pivotal role in ensuring that every aspect of the resort reflects the finest aspects of Southern Thai hospitality. Under his leadership, the resort has become synonymous with luxury, impeccable service, and culinary excellence.
For Mr Stix, the 31st anniversary of Santiburi Koh Samui is an opportunity to showcase the resort’s commitment to offering guests an unforgettable experience. He is delighted to invite esteemed guests to discover the incredible talent of Chef Chumpol, one of Thailand’s leading culinary experts. He believes that this epicurean journey will not only tantalize taste buds but also leave a lasting impression on the hearts and memories of those who appreciate the art of fine dining.
A Luxurious Culinary Retreat: The “Michelin Gourmet Stay” Package
To complete this exquisite dining experience, guests can choose to stay at Santiburi Koh Samui and avail themselves of the “Michelin Gourmet Stay” package. This indulgent package includes opulent accommodation, convenient return airport transfers, and the pièce de résistance: Chef Chumpol’s 12-course culinary extravaganza.
To enjoy this package, a two-night minimum stay is required, with an enticing bonus for those booking a Duplex Suite or Deluxe Garden Villa with Plunge Pool—upgrades to a Deluxe Garden Villa or Grand Reserve Pool Villa, respectively. This special celebratory package is available for bookings from now until the 6th of December, with stays scheduled between the 9th and 12th of December 2023, starting at THB 23,370 net for two nights.
Santiburi Koh Samui’s “From Michelin Stars to Samui Skies” culinary experience, featuring the culinary genius of Chef Chumpol Jangprai, promises to be a celebration of culinary artistry and Southern Thai hospitality.
With a menu that showcases the rich tapestry of flavours and ingredients from the region, this is an opportunity to embark on a gastronomic journey that will create lasting memories and leave diners with an appreciation for the culinary wonders of Thailand.
As Chef Chumpol and Mr Giulio Stix invite you to join this extraordinary event, prepare to be transported to a realm where Michelin stars meet Samui skies, creating a symphony of taste and luxury on the shores of Koh Samui.