The founder of Khao Takiab’s Air Space Restaurant is a young entrepreneur. Khun Air has travelled the world in her quest to understand how the ‘best of the best’ offer their culinary delights and it shows.
Our unplanned lunch with ‘Khun Air’, or to use her full name Kornsiri Sooppakitkul, meant experiencing just a taste of what she has learnt during her travels. She regards New York and particularly the district of Manhattan as the most diverse and dynamic place to learn about international restaurant culture. After all, just one website lists 11,570 establishments in New York.
Khun Air exploring the Arizona scenery.
The Air Space take on A New York hot dog The humble hotdog was our very modest taste of New York. One expert says there may be as many as 5,000 pushcarts in Manhattan, most of them selling hot dogs. The New York hotdog specialty is a frank (sausage) wrapped with a snappy natural casing, cooked on a flatiron griddle, dressed with spicy brown mustard, sauerkraut, and griddled onions. I can’t comment from experience how the Air Space version compares but who cares; it was the best hot dog I’ve ever devoured! Apart from two years spent exploring New York, Khun Air’s travels have included around seven years in Vancouver but also travels to North and South American countries, Europe, Australia and even Cuba. Just last month she was in London for a few weeks and next in her sights is the Easter Islands. Perhaps that’s to consider the ‘stone heads’ of the islands compared to Hua Hin’s stone head; but maybe a new take on Easter eggs for April?
We were also honoured to meet Khun Air’s very gracious mother during her weekend visit.
Visits to Hua Hin by the Bangkok based family have long been a tradition. Their affection and familiarity for our town is the main reason for choosing this location for Khun Air’s venture. The restaurant scene is not a part of the family background and Khun Air describes how she chose to become a Starbuck’s barista to show her family where her passion and future lay. That being accepted, her mother became the main influence and inspiration for the Air Space concept and unique presentation best symbolised by the ‘Wright Flyer’ suspended from one of the dining area interiors. For Khun Air the journey is far from over.
Also in her sights is the possibility of a PhD in hospitality. She’s contemplating a doctoral thesis which combines her interests in diverse cultures, cuisines, travels and hospitality. Any suggestions for the title are welcome. The founder of Air Space is probably one of youngest but also the most considered, travelled and entrepreneurial restaurateurs in Hua Hin. The result is a dining experience that is a class above most. Getting to know Khun Air is a very pleasant experience but be warned; our ‘brief’ visit stretched to a 2 hour expansive conversation in just the blink of an eye!
To contact Khun Air or Air Space Phone: 063 916 0999
Footnote: Air Space is on the corner of the short entry road to the Pattaya ferry port. The perfect place for a hot dog or whatever else you fancy before or after a cross-gulf ferry trip.