On days when traffic and torrential downpour cast a hazy shadow on your gloomy-faced car window reflection, the allure of an island in the Mediterranean sea could not be stronger. Yet flight hours are long and lengthy, and where Santorini and Capri seem idyllic in imagination, they’re a little tricky to spontaneously teleport to in practice.
Sure to knock the gloom out of you with its colourful interiors and high-spirited ambience comes Via Maris — a Silom bistro serving up Mediterranean cuisine for all lovers of Spanish, Italian, and Middle Eastern food. The brainchild of the husband and wife team behind Vesper Cocktail Bar, il Fumo Restaurant, and La Dotta Pasta Bar & Store, Via Maris is known for being a relaxed spot to kick back with good food and good vibes, since its opening at the end of last year.
Now introducing a brand new Sunday brunch menu for the summer, we got the chance to review a few of the freshly unveiled bites, and are happy to report we’ve found a cure for our European holiday blues, and a perfect place to unwind and kick start all of our coming weeks.
Located on leafy Convent Road, Via Maris sits inside a small yet lively location, and upon entering, it’s easy to see why it proves to be an ideal weekend brunch spot. Greeted by a colourful mural of the Mediterranean coastline, the bistro is inviting in a way that is upbeat and unpretentious, with feel-good 80s music spurring a warm melodious welcome. Charming ceramic plates adorn the marbled tables, with Spanish-style tiles and bright paintings illuminating the walls. The atmosphere is intimate enough to chat about last night’s antics, yet open enough to sit back and enjoy the tunes. It’s easy to let the hours fly past here, and conversations flow with each limitless pour of Prosecco to the glass. In essence, Via Maris honours its Southern European and Eastern theme, yet is unafraid to have fun with it, and this ease of mind and tranquil air swirls through the restaurant from kitchen to table.
Food & Drink
Via Maris gets its name from the Latin for ‘way of the sea’, referring largely to an ancient trade route connecting 21 countries along the coastline of the Mediterranean. Depicted in a bright orange and blue mural by the entrance, the dishes pay true homage to this, with an exciting tease to the taste buds of North African, Spanish, Southern Italian, and Eastern Mediterranean flavours.
The new brunch menu features a selection of their regular food menu items, as well as some specially curated brunch items. These incorporate everything that makes the mid-morning meal so beloved — from baked eggs and light salads, to sweet pancakes and free-flow cocktails.
After being seated inside with a glimpse of Convent Road’s dreamy weekend strollers, we began our meal with the raw Canadian scallop carpaccio with a green apple and celery salad, and a pistachio and raspberry garnish. The dish reads like a summer’s garden, and indeed is presented in similar flair. A refreshing burst of flavour within each bite, the scallops are rich yet not overwhelming, and add a coolness to the tongue that is sure to wake up even the sleepiest of brunch-goers. The sprinkles of fruit offer a playful combination of textures, making this dish a sophisticated starter or an ideal revitaliser to begin your meal.
Highly recommended, the shakshuka that arrived next did not disappoint. A clear contrast to the cool carpaccio, the hearty bowl of slow-roasted sweet peppers, chorizo Txistorra, and poached eggs in tomato sauce comes ready to soothe your Sunday soul. We gently maneuvered the egg and chorizo with a knife and fork first, before being advised to opt for the homemade flatbread as the ultimate carb-clad utensil to enjoy that tangy tomato sauce. With flavour notes of oriental cumin and coriander, this dish is packed with pungent flavour, and offers an immersive and indulgent eating experience.
It was at this point as we pondered between Harissa and garlic cloves, that Head Chef Francesco Dejana joined us at the table to explain his carefully sourced ingredients and Mediterranean influences. Hailing from the island of Sardinia, Chef Francesco speaks passionately about his food, noting most excitedly the local sources of his organic, sustainable produce. Between grand hand gestures and vigorous descriptions, it’s clear that the Italian chef is eager to experiment with the various spices of the Mediterranean, whilst still keeping a balance of local elements in his dishes. It is really this love and respect for each individual component that makes Via Maris’ brunch food menu uncomplicated yet well-executed, in an unfussy yet flavourful way.
Ending our meal was the sweet star of the brunch menu: the M’Smeen Moroccan style pancakes. Served warm, the doughy layered pancakes come alongside juicy strawberry slices and vanilla ice cream, and are best enjoyed in one pampering bite combining all three components. It’s a Sunday indulgence at its finest, managing to ooze sweetness without being forceful. A must-try for all dessert lovers.
In fact, whilst most of the new Via Maris brunch items can be enjoyed as single dishes, we recommend groups to opt for a selection of items to try and test and split between sips and stories at the table. There is no rush to finish the food fast and head out, but rather to unwind and enjoy the time together. As a perfect accompaniment to this, the brunch menu is even offered alongside a free flow drink package, inclusive of either unlimited Aperol Spritz, Bloody Marys, wines (white, red, or sparkling), and Peroni beer.
Via Maris understands what Sundays are all about, and this is evident from setting to soundtrack to selection of dishes. The staff are friendly and relaxed, and happy to explain or recommend a plate for every palate. Whether you’ve just rolled out of bed after a wild night before, or you’re looking for a pre-Monday pick-me-up, this weekend dining experience packs an exciting punch of energy from start to finish. In fact, merely upon opening the brunch menu, a sweet inscription reads, “a Sunday well spent brings a week of content”, and indeed, if we were looking for that content on a Sunday afternoon, we know we could definitely always find it here.
Opening Hours: Mon–Fri: 12-2.30pm, Sunday Brunch: 11.30am-4pm (last order 2.30pm), Mon-Sun Dinner: 5.30-11pm
Recommended Dishes: Canadian Scallop Carpaccio, M’Smeen Moroccan pancakes
Price: THB 300-500/person, with free-flow alcohol package at THB 499+/person
Noise Level: Lively guests sharing night-before stories, cheerful 80s music, immersive but not intrusive
Service: Friendly and knowledgeable, spreaders of good vibes
Via Maris, 10/15 Convent Rd., Silom, Bangkok, + +66 2 236 5558