Can fast and friendly Italian cuisine really survive underneath a BTS station? No Doubt. In case you hadn’t noticed, ambience isn’t usually the first requirement, or ever a requirement, of where Bangkokians eat. We’ve eaten underneath expressways with our feet submerged in mud and in wet markets that smell like something you’d shoot after setting it on fire…just to make sure it was dead. Hot garbage!
So when La Pala shrugged off the naysayers who said tiny spaces under mass transit are reserved for franchises like Dunkin Donuts or street food it wasn’t that big of a surprise. After all, the main reason you set up at in these types of locations is all the walk-up traffic of paying customers you’re going to get. Just ask all those poor kids collecting coins in the same vicinity. Aren’t they adorable? It’s also really close to Soi Cowboy if you care about that sort of thing.
The design of La Pala is brilliant. Large bay windows capture the attention of passerby’s, while patrons can sit and watch the scene from inside the fishbowl. There are only five tables and a booth, so even when La Pala’s only half-full it looks busy, even though much of its business is take-a-way orders. It’s probably not where you’d take a date, but on the other hand the precarious seating arrangements could make for a fun drinking game. Whoever falls off their stool first loses.
The main order of business here is pizza. One slice is actually a rather generous oval-sized portion cut into four, with prices starting from 80 baht. Quality ingredients are the key here, even if the crust is a little thicker than our personal preferences. La Pala even offers tom yam pizza for those that just can’t get enough squid on their pie.
We also had a killer huge Panini (150 baht), and if the deli display counter looks familiar, it’s because the same company that runs La Pala runs the Italian deli display at Gourmet Market Siam Paragon. There really is an impossible display of meats, cheeses, sauces, olives and canned goods on offer. Quite impressive.
The kitchen runs out daily specials like risotto with sausage and saffron for 240 baht, and the owner prides himself of having just enough wines available that you’ll never go thirsty.
Let there be no doubt, with this quality food at these prices and at such a convenient location, KohSpot will be back several times. Stop for a nosh next time you’re walking by La Pala.
Location: Literally under the BTS Asok station, at street level, in front of Terminal 21.
Mass transit: BTS Asok and MRT Sukhumvit
Hours: 11:30 am to 10 pm daily