Chiang Mai
Friday to Sunday 11-13 March 2016

Nearly touched Paradise

Just recently, the Cordon Noir Thailand under the leadership of Marco Brueschweiler had a weekend gathering in Chiang Mai to inaugurate 
a new member to our prestigious and Gourmet Club

18 members sighed up for this event  and so did I and I was glad I did ,what followed was one of the nicest and diversified weekend filled with sunshine, fun, friendship and great food, all put together seamlessly by our Cordon Noirians from Thailand

Let me start from the beginning, some of us arrived from Malaysia, Bangkok and me from Hong Kong, after a smooth transfer from the Airport to the Furama Hotel, we meet at the lobby and went out to a northern Thai noodle restaurant (shop) recommended by our driver. the food was very good and extremely economical, 

Hannes, Fon & Marco at Curry Mee

we felt refreshed and went for a little sightseeing which included one temple, very beautiful and a little bit unusual as it was done entirely out of wood .
the only fully wooden build temple in ThailandRoyal gate sight seen

Next was the local market, and our focus was on the dried fruits and nuts; and they were delicious. We then got a little city tour by our cab driver before we returned to the hotel and meet up with the rest of our members and friends and some of us had a refreshing beer at the bar before we went to our rooms and changed to our evening cloth for dinner.

By now we are nearly completed and went for the Northern Thai Dinner at Khum Khantoke; a very nice venue with a big outdoor entertainment area… and our seating location was perfect and comfortable. The food was very good and authentic and with our local ladies at the dinner table we even got it spiced up a little, as the evening went on, we enjoyed easy table conversation together with good wine and other beverages.

The entertainment was grand and very diverse, a big assemble and many beautiful costume, by the time we were done we really felt like we have arrived in beautiful Thailand.

We returned relatively early at our Hotel for good reasons as most of us had traveled from afar, some had a one hour time difference, and we also had to get out of bed at 4 am next morning, to witness the sunrise on top of the Doi Intanon, the highest mountain in Thailand 2565 meter above sea level.

So when our President Jochen Kern called us from Malaysia at 10:30 pm, he was surprised that most of us were already in bed.

The morning came fast and we all assembled once again in the lobby at 4:45 am to experience our big day. After collecting our Breakfast boxes we were transported in two very comfortable vans for 2 hours towards the mountain top and heaven.

We arrived at that beautiful spot a few minutes late; but never than less witnessed a beautiful sunrise welcoming and celebrating a new day and a fantastic event for us.
The weather was surprisingly chilly, only between 9 to 14 degree Celsius, depending which thermometer you were looking at.
While the sun was warming up the earth, we kept warm by a brisk hike to the top and to the summit cafe to enjoy some hot coffee and hot chocolates. The local coffee was very good.
Then we carried on for a beautiful jungle walk, plenty of Fauna and Flora and fresh air filling our city lungs.  

Back at the car we headed to a place close to paradise: and way beyond my expectation. It was a wonderful scenery with two big monuments; the two Chedis in honor of the King and Queen on two different hill tops surrounded by stunning gardens with hundreds of different European types of flowers decorating it . Very rarely in the past I had seen such an organized arrangement of vibrant colors... we were at the Versailles of Thailand! The weather was mild and that explained why they are able to grow such beautiful flowers.

Too soon we had to leave this magical place and we were driven down to road to the Royal Project which is located in the Khun Klang Village, this project started by the King in 2009 to educate the hill tribe people in terms of farming and land accommodation.


They had been encouraged to cultivate cash crops instead of opium and improving their living condition significantly. Also agricultural carriers had been given to the Karen and Hmong people in their community, and they now grow a variety of cool climate vegetable and fruits, their strawberries are so sweet and over the top.   

We visited also a Sturgeon and Trout farm, tasted some of their caviar, which originated from the Siberian Sturgeon and it was of good quality at a fair price. 

We also seen the plant nursery, and everything from coffee plant to swiss chard, from rosemary to thyme and parsley, even small merlot grapes, they also had zucchini and fennel and of course the strawberries orchard and the rice terraces on the hills.


And in the middle of it is an semi outdoor restaurant, where we had a great lunch together with some bubblies supplied by Hannes, (thank you) the food was plentiful and we enjoyed it very much in the shade of a bamboo roof but still outside in nature, surrounded by all the plants and vegetables and a waterfall in the distance. 

 Rudi & Toni at the Royal Lunch

After lunch and on our way back we stopped at a local street fruit and vegetable market; where we bought more dried fruits and nuts and also some fresh fruits like Strawberries and other cold climate types.

farm lunch Jeffry and Friends 

After a very good snooze in the van we arrived back at the hotel and once again refreshed ourselves at the bar before moving on the get changed and ready for the grand dinner:


the very core reason why 18 people travelled to Chiang Mai.

 the senior chefs Wissmer and Pozzato waiting for the Cordon Noir Dinner

We met at 6 pm in the lobby, all of us nicely dressed and decorated with our Cordon Noir Medal, a symbol of fraternize and belonging.
The ladies wore their best summer dresses and the Gentlemen looked somehow respectable too. 

We arrived at the Monkey Kitchen Restaurant just in time for the cocktail, the place was small but cozy, and it was closed for other guests and there a long table was beautifully decorated with linen, chinaware, silver, glasses and flower arrangement and seats for 18 persons.

Executive Gourmet Thailand & VP at Menu Check

The chef/owner aim is to become a member of good standing in our club and therefore she; Phattanant Thongthong must together with her crew; cook a dinner for us which contains caviar in at least one course, she had it in all courses. 

Chef Thong Thong 

Chef Thong Thong is a rising star in the culinary scene and she made a name for herself in competing and winning at food competition as far away as Hong Kong.


Now to the Menu and food:


We started off with a beautiful pan fried prawn on a little potato mash topped with Sevruga caviar and a thing crispy potato ring standing and giving crisp and height to the dish, the combination was very good and went well with the white wine selected by Hannes.


The next course was very nice a light eggy savory pannacotta, reheated and  served in an eggshell and topped with caviar, placed on a wooden board in a small bird nest, what a great tasting dish this was. 


Next course: A to perfection slow cooked and lightly smoky salmon was served next with a bit of plain yogurt and a black coal wafer and of course once again topped with caviar ,this time chef used the local caviar from the farm we just visited earlier on in the day, also a very nice dish 

The soup followed and if I remember correctly (sorry I lost the menu) it was a very fine green pea soup with a bit cream and again decorated with caviar and some flowered oil. 

The caviar really added that extra kick and flavor to the soup.


So far the food was very good and the team of 5 young chefs in the kitchen and the two servers on the floor did a great job, it was seamless and the food came out at the right temperature, including the plates… and at the right time, also the wines, now we were into the red Bordeaux and water was replenished at all the times.


After a little break we had a small but very refreshing lime-basil sherbet to cleanse our pallets and to get us ready for the main course. 


The main course looked great, it was a roasted lamb loin coated in a lamb farce I think it was, and then gently steamed and panfried, not an easy dish to do, as you cannot get the core temperature to high, so that you don't overcook the lamb, this was achieved and while the farce was cooked, the lamb in the center  was still pink, this dish was served together with a celeriac puree i believe , glazed baby carrots  some broccocino, a mixture between cauliflower and Broccoli, according to the chef and the vegetables came again from the Royal Project which we visited earlier on. Not to forget, there was caviar for the main course too and a nice lamb juice. Great dish.


And finally we moved on to the dessert, it was a symphony of colors, and reminded me of the garden we visited earlier on , there was a sphere with vanilla, ice cream, Strawberry  and blueberries (all local) and some molecular fruit caviar, beautiful presented with some fluffy chocolate sponge.


And that was the menu; I must say it was an outstanding meal coming out of such a small kitchen, with such a young team and such a talented, humble young chef. 


We went on with inauguration right away and everybody was in full agreement that she will make a great member in our Club and she will bring a wealth of culinary treasures and knowledge with her to us and enriches our Cordon Noir Club 


Thank you chef Thong Thong for giving this great Epicurean experience 


At this point I would also like to say thank you to Marco and all the members and friends which came along and have given the support and made this a great weekend in spirit of our founder Jochen Kern 

Vice President Rudy Muller

Sunday Tour

The Sunday Hart Core 

riding Elephants and visit the long neck clan

Thank  you Marco, Rudolf , and all participating  Cordon Noirian

see you in June >>>>>Singapore, Bali & KL!