Sabai Fine Thai on the Bay

With a cute spot down by the waterfront, this restaurant is awash with ambient amber light over parquet floors, black leather chairs and starched white tablecloths, giving the place a clean, crisp, almost corporate feel. We started with the yam mamuang ($17.50), a spicy green mango salad with prawns and chicken. The flavor of peanuts and sweet sauce hit us right away, as did the spice—a fire that razed our tongue on contact—not necessarily a bad thing. We love the tom yam ruam mit talay ($20.50)—a simmering pot of mushrooms and seafood in a clear soup, accented with ginger and lemongrass. The broth was not oily at all, and its sour and spicy flavor played off the prawns and fish, although the squid was a little overcooked. The pat gaprao neua, moo, gai ($22)—stir-fried chicken with basil leaves and green peppercorns (also available in beef and pork)—was only mildly peppery and a most welcome respite from the inferno. As evidence that the spiciness of the previous dishes hadn’t singed our taste buds to numbness, the gang bpet yang pollamai—roasted red duck curry—was simply divine. There was the right amount of coconut cream, and the addition of lychee and pineapple made the dish a delightful combination of sweet, savory and creamy. For dessert, the Thai wines we spotted piqued our interest, so we went with a glass of Monsoon Valley white Shiraz Rosé and late harvest Chenin Blanc (both $13) from Siam Winery in Hua Hin Hills. Both proved lovely accompaniments to kao niew durian nahm gati ($9.50), or durian sticky rice. Despite the intense flavor of the durian, and overly-salted sticky rice, the Chenin Blanc possessed just the right amount of subtle sweetness to balance the dish. Service-wise, staff were attentive and helpful overall, even chatty. Call us masochistic, but the blazing dishes are well worth coming back for.

If you’re craving Thai curries, papaya salad or just stir-fried pad ka prao (basil leaves and minced pork), this list of what is arguably the best Thai restaurants in Singapore got you covered.