21 Apr 2015
Nestled amidst the financial capitals around Market Street, I misjudged this place to be yet another posh-ly decorated overpriced and reheated food serving establishment. Just opposite the pricey Platypus Lobster shack, Folks Collective is the most memorable Thai restaurant I've been to so far that serves good comforting food, even drinks and had an ambience like no other at a very very reasonable price.
The best part entering the restaurant was seeing so many actual Thai people welcoming you. It didn't employ locals or other foreigners faking a "Sawadeekap" like how Thai Express does. The entire place carried this old-worldy charm and tables seemed neat and despite its small size, was very cosy. Design-wise, it was great - although it didn't feel like stepping into Thailand as much as stepping into Beer Thai did. Nevertheless, the kind and courteous waitresses and the Thai accent kicked me deep into Thailand more than i could have wished for.
Food quality is argueable. If you would compare some of the best Thai places in Singapore versus this - there is some room for improvement. However, that boils down to the level of not being authentic Thai enough like how a Filipino would compare the original taste of a Jollibee burger in Philippines to the one here. It's noticeable, but not as lacking as Thai Express or Bali Thai. With these waitresses, you can feel that love and that homely feel that compliments the taste in the food.
Stuff that you couldn't find anywhere else were definitely some of the wins here. Fried chicken skin - a must have for starters. The Tom Yum Clear Seafood Soup is also enriched with sufficient prawns and oyster mushrooms and more importantly balances suicide spice of the original Thai soup to a healthy working level.
I didn't' go for a complete Thai dinner everytime i stepped in. To me, a basil chicken rice with egg is my ratatouille. Simple yet so decadently pleasing. I was amazed by the portion offered in that. There is enough chicken for 2 if you decide to order more stuff to share. The Pad Thai is also well balanced. No pretentious lack of oil, it stays true to the real stuff.
Drinks include the Lemongrass with honey, especially useful for days when I'm feeling under the weather. Iced Milk Tea is another favourite. Both are not rendered in sugar like the other franchise Thai outlets. Just lovely.
Perhaps the best part of this place is receiving the bill. Most post-work dinners always cost me quite a bit with me and my partner. Here however, after a really good dinner, we are always surprised by how low it costs. The location where its at doesn't make sense either.
Really a gem of a place, under-reviewed and under-visited. I do like it that way. It has become my favourite weekly post-work haunt. Great to wind down and be well taken care of.