There are a few dishes that alone are worth a journey. I definitely travel to eat and will admit that I have taken certain destinations off my 'to see list' because the food didn't appeal to me. Despite having a foodie bucket list I have yet to travel somewhere just to eat a certain dish.
This may change though as I am heading back to Thailand in a couple of weeks and no, this time I am not just going for the pad thai. I am going because I am pretty sure that I have discovered the best pizza in the world.
Where to find the best pizza in the world
The best pizza in the world in Thailand? I can see you shake your head in disbelief and if anyone would have told me that a few months ago I would have been right there with you. Especially since I also managed to eat one of the worst pizzas of my life within a mere week of this glorious discovery. But hear me out.
Last time I was in Thailand I got invited by one of my favorite PR people in the world to explore some of their Khao Lak hotels for Travelettes. We quickly settled on dates and I was excited to clear my head after Sri Lanka, India and that damn heartbreak that messed up a better part of my travels last year. A few nights at some nice hotels, ocean views and beach time seemed just what the doctor ordered.
Unfortunately, it was pretty much pouring down nonstop for my entire time in Khao Lak. So far I have been really lucky when it comes to traveling in offseason but this time around I saw the sun maybe once for ten minutes.
Not ideal to write a post about what to do in Khao Lak but to be honest I didn't mind the downtime. There was good wifi and movies and it provided the perfect excuse for me to just cuddle up and avoid family life in the one hotel and couples' makeout session in the other.
The only time I left my room was for meal times because a) the hotel had graciously invited me and b) I am definitely a stress eater. Be still my broken heart, I will just feed you some more parmesan pasta and all shall be well! The event that will make me stop eating and turn me into a size 6 has yet to happen. I doubt it will, I am just not the kind of girl who will stop eating for a guy. In good times and in bad.
There are many Khao Lak restaurants and as it is usually the case with little seaside towns they can be a bit of a hit or miss, depending on how touristy the area is. The Kokulo beach club that is part of the La Vela Khao Lak hotel is still quite new and tucked away from the main road so it doesn't get too much street traffic. The menu is light and international, the service some of the best I've experienced (yes, even for Thai standards their staff is incredibly nice and attentive!) and then there is their pizza.
Not that I ordered pizza on my first night there. Ordering pizza seemed a wasted opportunity to get an actual feel for their menu and behave like a grown-up for a change (is it just me or do you also secretly envy kids who get to order chicken nuggets from a special kids menu?!).
The irony that I don't remember any other dish but the pizza isn't lost on me.
The food was lovely and it was still raining and so I returned for lunch the next day. Now a pizza sounded good. Even better their Kokulo Pizza made from sepia dough (blackened with squid ink), seafood, garlic, chili, and Thai basil.
I think seafood pizza is one of those dishes that divides the masses. Some think it is an abomination and the worst thing you could ever put on a pizza (mind you, I think those are the people who have no issues throwing a banana on a pizza!). Others think seafood and pizza are a match made in heaven and I happen to be one of them.
So I ordered my Kokulo pizza, sat back with a big glass of white wine - because still heartbroken and let's not kid ourselves, alcohol does help! - and watched the rain.
Have you ever tried a dish and loved it so much that you wanted to order a second plate while still busy with the first? I have only actually done that once in Verona with my dad and a plate of truffle pasta. Back then my excuse was that the plate was meant as a starter and therefore quite small. Unfortunately here I didn't have the same good excuse except for the fact that I was eating the best pizza of my life. It wasn't just the best pizza in Thailand, to me, this was the best pizza in the world - something I will not say lightly. I sighed in delight at the thin crusty yet chewy black dough, the fresh juicy seafood and the spicy kick the pizza had. Who needs men when you can have such a pizza?
Needless to say, I returned not once but twice. And to this day it is a (food) affair to remember and a great reason to travel to Khao Lak, rain or shine. Yes, I can officially add a pizza to my tagline!