By Megan Leon
Sep 27, 2022
AS THE SAYING GOES, when one door closes, another opens and it’s quite literally the case for the rustic Thai eatery, Err Restaurant, which has awakened from a temporary slumber, taking over the space of the once-beloved Bangkok institution, Soul Food Mahanakorn, which closed last year.
Originally opened back in June 2015, Err comes from sustainably minded power-chef couple Duangporn Songvisava and Dylan Jones, who ran the venerable Michelin-starred Bo.lan restaurant for 13 years before moving onto their latest venture, The Food Trust. The first Err location was in the heart of the Bangkok Old Town, within sight of Wat Po, and locals and tourists congregated for Thai drinking food that stood apart in style from its fine-dining mother restaurant but never strayed in quality.
The pandemic was brutal on Bangkok’s F&B industry, taking down restaurants that had been mainstays for years, including Soul Food, which when it opened was a pioneer in presenting authentic yet approachable Thai food paired with craft cocktails and craft beers, in a cool setting. The covid-induced closure of the casual Thai eatery was a shock for many and left a culinary hole in the swanky Thonglor neighborhood. That is until Bo and Dylan made some moves.
“We thought it was perfect for what Err is: the location is great and Thonglor was missing that genre after the closure of Soul Food,” Jones tells me during my visit during opening week. “It was meant to be.”
The new Err has an unassuming setting slightly reminiscent of its prior spot, despite being on the other side of Bangkok. “We did as little as possible and kept the bones and structure the same where you can still feel the soul of Soul Food, but added our own touches as well,” Jones says.
Quality ingredients remain at the forefront, and they continue to source strictly from their long list of trustworthy ethical suppliers, in addition to making their own concoctions in house. That means, for example, freshly pressed coconut creams for their fragrant curry paste.
On the menu is rustic Thai fare in categories ranging from grilled proteins, spicy salads, curries and beyond. A must-try and definitely one of the most famous house dishes is the Chicken Movie: whole chicken skin that is deep-fried and served with housemade sriracha – the perfect snack with an ice-cold beer. You’ll also find their delish versions of all the usual suspects, like chicken satay, barbecue pork ribs, and stir-fried morning glory in shrimp paste. “The menu is almost the same, with some more recent dishes from random pop-ups we’ve done,” Jones says. “And we’ve added more vegan and vegetarian options.”
All the food at Err is meant for sharing but who are we to judge if you want to roll up, take a seat at the counter bar and savor all the dishes to yourself? (Guilty.) There are also some great natural wine choices, Isaan rum and fresh juices that will add that extra bang to your meal.
If you can’t make it to – or perhaps can’t get enough of – the new brick-and-mortar Err in Bangkok, the Err Cookbook will debut in October 2022 and is now available for preorder. The book features everything from basic recipes to most of their top hit dishes, with stunning photography from around Thailand by Paulo Barata and Chris Wise.
www.instagram.com/errbangkok; mains Bt85 – Bt395
All photos courtesy of Err Bangkok.