For those with even a passing interest in gastronomy, the name Simon Rogan rings familiar. Rogan, recognized notably for his pioneering Lake District restaurant, L’Enclume, played a pivotal role in elevating the farm-to-table dining concept onto the global culinary stage.
From the foundations of L’Enclume emerged Aulis – initially conceived as a testing ground beneath the Lake District establishment, inviting inquisitive diners to witness Rogan’s meticulous culinary processes. However, what began as a test kitchen has metamorphosed into a standalone restaurant. Following the triumph of the inaugural venue, a London-based restaurant surfaced in 2017, Hong Kong followed suit in 2019, and now the latest addition: Aulis Phuket.
Officially inaugurated on Thursday, December 7, Aulis Phuket finds its abode within the premises of Iniala Beach House—an opulent complex of villas overlooking the Andaman Sea—marking Rogan’s maiden venture in Thailand.
Despite being some 6,000 miles distant from the Lake District, Aulis Phuket adheres staunchly to the original ethos: an intimate, creatively crafted fine dining experience rooted in a dedicated focus on locally sourced, meticulously cultivated ingredients.
“Attaining three Michelin stars at L’Enclume last year, two decades after its inception, felt like the realization of a long-held and hard-earned dream,” remarked Rogan. “More than anything, it has fueled our drive and ambition further.
“Exploring new countries and adapting our refined farm-to-table ethos, honed in Cartmel, to diverse climates, terrains, and cultures feels exhilarating. Following recent pop-ups in Australia and Singapore, alongside our accomplishments in Hong Kong, the opportunity in Thailand felt like a perfect fit.”
Similar to previous Aulis iterations, Rogan’s latest establishment will offer a tasting-menu exclusively, catering to just 15 guests per sitting with a meticulously curated array of dishes. While the Cartmel and London venues source ingredients from their own Lake District farm, Aulis Phuket has ventured into innovative culinary realms.
Rogan and the culinary team have diligently highlighted native Thai ingredients, interpreting them through the prism of the group’s signature culinary styles. While some dishes make their debut at Aulis Phuket, a few well-received favorites make a delightful return.
A savory croissant-based bread and butter snack, adorned with black truffle—an indulgence relished during recent evenings at the London establishment—seems reimagined in this menu, this time enhanced with caramelized banana molasses. Rogan’s distinctive caviar, crafted by Petrossian and seasoned to the chef’s exacting preferences, also graces the Phuket offering, served alongside sweetcorn custard, clams, and sea grapes.
Amidst Simon Rogan’s diverse restaurant empire spanning the globe, Aulis remarkably retains his distinct culinary signature. While L’Enclume rightfully stands as the flagship with its three Michelin stars, the intimate Aulis group has carved its niche.
Rogan once again collaborates with his trusted executive chef, Oli Marlow, in crafting the menu for Aulis Phuket, yet the day-to-day operations are entrusted to head chef Giacomo Primante.
Despite their geographical disparities, each Aulis restaurant encapsulates a similar ambiance—dimly lit, with low ceilings and an emphasis on metallic elements. Each exudes exclusivity, featuring a limited number of seats encircling an unrestrained chef’s kitchen.
Aulis Phuket retains this essence but with distinctive nuances. It maintains the design-forward metal surfaces reminiscent of the group’s test-kitchen origins, yet here, the compact yet dynamic kitchen opens up to a panorama of lush palm trees—a stark contrast to the Soho ambiance of London.
Ckori Pena, an architectural designer based in Thailand, was entrusted with bringing this immersive space to life, incorporating local materials wherever feasible in her design process.