Holidaymakers arriving in Phuket for the sun and the sand might be surprised to find a posh dining scene dotting the island. From traditional Thai to modern international flavors, Phuket serves up world-class cuisine, wine, and contemporary ambiance to suit the tastes of the jet set this side of Bangkok. Fine dining in Phuket, you quickly learn, can be worth the trip itself.

Cudos Restaurant & Bar, Surin Beach, Ph: 076 386 598 www.cudosrestaurant.com  delivers a unique and elegant dining destination offering the very best of regional Mediterranean cuisine in Surin Beach right next door to 'The Plaza' Surin. With air-conditioned indoor and outdoor dining spaces, Cudos offers the perfect atmosphere for casual dining 7 days a week.    Cudos offers an excellent selection of modern inspired Mediterranean dishes using only the highest quality fresh imported and local produce. Capturing the true essence of Mediterranean flavors from Italy, Spain, Southern France, Greece, Turkey and North Africa, Cudos has created a contemporary menu perfect for a casual snack or a more formal dinner engagement.   Bar Cudos offers contemporary signature and classic cocktails and a well selected wine list of new and old world classics plus a selection of boutique labels, an eclectic range of wines by the glass and boutique spirits.

Mom Tri's Kitchen at Villa Royale in Kata Noi  Ph: 076 333 568 has a well established restaurant owned by Thai royale Mom Luang Tri Devakul. Guests enjoy dining in an award-winning restaurant set just above the rocks overlooking Kata Noi Beach. Panoramic sea views combined with the sound of the waves below create a peaceful, sensually indulgent and romantic setting. Two exuberant menus offers delicious Thai and European creations. Popular dishes include hot crab soufflé, light and savoury appetisers, tuna carpaccio, Phuket lobster and Angus beef tenderloin. Mom Tri's Kitchen is the winner of the Wine Spectator's Award of Excellence for 7 years in a row and has over 750 labels including an extensive organic wine list and 18 wines available by the glass.

As the name suggests, White Box  076-346-271, in Kalim Beach, has simplistic ultra-modern decor in a trendy beachfront venue. The cuisine is sophisticated Mediterranean, though some local Thai dishes also make an appearance on the menu. After hours, White Box turns from restaurant to club, hosting international DJ’s, cocktails and nightlife.

For something more traditional, Baan Rim Pa, 076-340-789 near White Box, is a long-time standard of those revisiting Phuket, or first-timers in search of Royal Thai cuisine. Baan Rim Pa also has an extensive wine selection, nightly live jazz downstairs at Joe’s and a relaxing cigar bar for aficionados in the crowd.

Silk Restaurant & Bar 076-338-777, recently moved from Surin to Andara Resort and Villas in Kamala, remains a favorite of locals for its authentic gourmet Thai menu. But even locals may be hard pressed to find a comparable hilltop ocean view at sunset, to go perfectly with a signature cocktail in hand. Guests can dine on the infinity pool terrace, or at the chic restaurant inside, with its teak pillars and sleek urban bar. On the way to dinner, wine connoisseurs stop by the boutique downstairs and pick up a bottle to compliment Silk’s specialty dishes, like the Goong Sarong or Whole Steamed White Snapper.

Trisara, offers Thai and western menus  as well as a Champagne Brunch every Sunday, offering Roederer Champagne or a wide variety of wines whilst listening to the cool sounds of fantastic jazz trio.