One of the hidden gems on the dining scene of the west coast of Koh Phangan is Koh Raham. It is a restaurant perched on a small rocky outcrop to the right hand side of Haad Son Beach. It claims to be the true taste of beach dining. Rather, this restaurant explores the possibilities of how a restaurant can interact with the ocean in new and dynamic ways.
The name is a little confusing. Anyone who has spent some time in Thailand will know that ‘koh’ means island. ‘Raham’ in Thai means frenzied, frenetic, foolhardy, dare devilish. It would be overstating to say this restaurant is frenetic or foolhardy. It is in fact a very chilled spot. It is next to a beach called ‘secret beach’ that has only one resort – Haad Son Resort – so it is never bustling with folk. However, there is the slightly daredevil option of climbing down some steps from the restaurant to the sea. The water is full of fish. They aren’t exactly in a frenzy although when people throw food in the water they swim with more vigour.
There is a sense of romance and adventure to this restaurant. To get to Koh Raham you drive to the parking area near the reception of Haad Son Resort. Then you walk down stairs to the restaurant. You walk through the shady entrance to the restaurant, past the bar to a wide concrete patio perched on a rocky outcrop. Suddenly you experience great views of the ocean and the beach. Explore further and you find steps leading down to the water. As you can see from the video above, plenty of people come for a swim. It is a chance to snorkel and see some fish in the water rather than on your plate!
Compared to the views and the location the food and drink is a bit disappointing at Koh Raham. The menu is usual mix of strandard Thai dishes, seafood and Western favourites such as burger and fries. Some of the seafood is caught locally but some items such as the prawns are not.
They serve the usual range of cold drinks – juice, beer, cocktails etc. The prices are a bit higher since there is no competition on Secret Beach. Take it or leave it.
There are the usual breakfast items on offer – bacon, eggs, muesli. Again nothing special. The service is quite good. As you can see from the Trip Advisor snippet below the restaurant is generally rated as good. Nobody is going nuts about the food. It is the location that gives you a taste of what beach dining could be about; not the cuisine.