Pushing Thai food abroad

January 9, 2014


What started as a small scale restaurant in Bangkok’s historic Silom area has become a world spanning venture for founder and CEO of Mango Tree Worldwide, Pitaya Phanphensophon.

Pitaya Phanphensophon almost grew up in a restaurant. His father, a Chinese native from Canton, or Guangzhou, opened the first COCA restaurant in Bangkok 57 years ago and when Pitaya had the opportunity to take over an old wooden house in Suriwongse, his first thought was to make the space into a restaurant. The only question was, what kind?





After months of deliberations, Pitaya and his wife finally settled on Thai food, recognising the potential of the then relatively unknown cuisine. Of Chinese origin, neither Pitaya nor his wife or parents felt they knew enough about Thai food to put together the menu so he asked his nanny, a Thai native, to teach him about the intricacies of local cuisine. The rest, they say, is history.

Listen to the full interview with Pitaya Phanphensophon here.


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