Let me start off by saying I'm from L.A. and that I regularly travel on business or pleasure to San Francisco, New York, and elsewhere. So I've been to few good restaurants, including trendy ones that try to put out a cool vibe in nicely designed surroundings. Mantra is all of the above. That's not easy to say in Thailand, which may have some of the best food (and people) in the world, but which also has its fair share of strange formica/linoleum/ceiling fan spaces and other decidely low budget looking joints. Mantra is an absolutely cool looking place: Huge, two stories, modern design, with great valet parking, and a nice greeting from at least two or three beautiful ladies at the front door. But enough about the atmospherics. You're also here for food. The food is excellent, as good as you find anywhere, and that includes L.A. I had a mixed grill (duck, pork belly, steak) that was out of this world. Killer sushi. Amazing well done Indian food (Chicken Tikka Masala), and of course, they do a pretty good job on Thai food. Whether for a date, for a big gathering, or just eating by one's self because you're hungry, I think it's the best restaurant in Pattaya.
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