Simple Italian food done right is harder to find in Phuket than one would think. Many restaurants mistake the addition of tomato sauce (and sometimes, ketchup) for an actual REAL Italian-style sauce. It’s a pity, really.

Not so at Pasta Basta, located inside the Royal Phuket Marina in Koh Kaew. Pasta Basta is part of a trifecta of food and drink establishments at RPM – all right next to each other. The place has an industrial feel to it, with white brick walls, large light fixtures atop the long table in the middle, and tall bar stools on the side tables with special lighting atop them. It’s an interesting look for an Italian restaurant that screams “modern” and “contemporary chic.” On the side, we had a bit of the grilled chicken salad (which included cranberries, pine nuts and feta cheese). It reminded me of the salads back in Northern New Jersey, where several Italian restaurants would provide a salad simliar to this – it’s a great side dish since it packs a lot of unique flavors and textures but is still light .

Next up, we finally got a chance to see what Thai/Italian fusion was all about. And it didn’t disappoint

The Fettucini with pad khi mao (drunken noodles) was very light and had a bit of kick though it was still very mild compared to usual Thai food. It was a surprising hit that included Thai flavors but with a bit of an Italian slant on things. If some of the dishes in the menu descriptions read a bit different, it’s because Pasta Basta’s menu includes Thai/Italian fusion dishes for the locals. We’ll get to that in a moment.

To start off, we enjoyed two types of Bruschetta: one with mozzarella and chillis and the other with a mix of mushrooms and parmagiano cheese. While the first was delectable with a clean finish (though with a slight kick), the mushrooms and parma cheese Bruschetta was something completely new to us and we loved it. The mushrooms and cheese melded beautifully atop the crispy bread – a real hit and something we would definitely recommend again! Next was the Thai chicken and basil pizza. This was another surprise hit as it too had a bit of a kick, though it was a bit small. We only wish there was more of it! It easily was the best dish we’ve had all day (along with the bruschetta/mushroom and parmagiano cheese antipasto). We could eat this all day and not feel bad about our figure!

We also tried the pizza made with pesto, fresh mozzarella and cherry tomatoes. It has a good mix of textures, though it was not as flavorful after having the Thai chicken and basil pizza just before it.

The menu at Pasta Basta changes every 4-5 months according to the seasons and dishes are always  added to the menu. Come check out Pasta Basta for a taste of Thai/Italian fusion!

Written by JP, E-Table Asia