Telephone: 076 224284, 076 214037
Address: 62/5 Soi Phutorn, Bangkok Road, Phuket City.
Style: Local Thai food
Price range: Good value. Most dishes are around 120 baht, which will barely get you a lime juice at some overpriced Phuket restaurants. Smoked salmon sashimi (120 baht) grilled tiger prawns (120 baht) steamed cotton fish with lemon sauce (50b/100g) fried snapper chunks hot plate with black pepper (150 baht) oysters (40 baht) morning glory stir fried in oyster sauce (60 baht) Singha beer (45/85 baht) and most soft drinks and shakes 45 baht or less.
Specialty: Where to start? At No. 1 perhaps, Spring Rolls (120 baht) then chew on through to No. 201, Healthy Steamed Rice (120 baht). Plenty of chicken and pork dishes but the focus is on seafood. Hard to go wrong. Fluffy fried catfish salad (120 baht) blue crab stir fried in curry sauce (per 100g) mixed shellfish with cheese and white wine (120 baht). The local desserts are tasty, with sweet mango with coconut sticky rice (50 baht) a fine option.
What Phuketwan says: If Tarzan and Jane ever opened a restaurant, it would be like this one. Thammachat is is one of the great delights of dining in Phuket City. Once discovered, it usually becomes a regular ''must go'' destination to take visitors or to dine with local company. Thais love it as much as tourists. Thammachat means ''natural'' in English and it's certainly that. The restaurant swings from tree to tree, with each level rising a little higher. Stay away for long enough and when you return, you will find new platforms have been added, and decorated with old bicycles and huge fallen-tree tabletops on sewing machine treadles. Fish swim in old television sets. Orchids pour from pots. Music from the 1950s fills the air as local delicacies fill stomachs. The eyes never tire of discovering fresh quirks. As regulars know, one of Phuketwan's tests is to ask for a whole young coconut to see whether a restaurant really does know how to cater for tropical tourists. Any on Phuket that cannot supply one should be ashamed. We were told this particular night at Tammachart that supplies had been exhausted. No whole young coconut. We'd have to settle for something else. Do you know what? Five minutes later, the waitress brought the drinks, and there was a fine whole young coconut. Hard to fault that kind of service. Here it comes naturally.
How to find it: Not easy. Thammmachat is in such an obscure part of town that even locals have sometimes never realised it existed until friends took them there. Near the local vegetable market. Swing past the Yui Tui Chinese Temple down the one-way, then look carefully for a restaurant hidden among the greenery on your left.
Parking: On both sides of the one-way street.
Phuketwan restaurant reviewers pay for their meals. If someone else does, we tell you so