Sunday, May 11, 2008

Sripraphai

for one of his last weekends in the city, Karl decided he wanted to eat at the vaunted Sripraphai, waayyy out in Woodside. Priya and I went to see some feminist and Icelandic art at PS1 first and then met Karl, Bill, and Lauren there for a late lunch (2pm). it was busy but not packed/crowded--no reservation needed, extra seats here and there...

the food was delicious, as always. karl got a duck soup with noodles that was really brown-tasting (hard to describe otherwise? meaty, hearty, brothy--delicious). we shared a barbecue pork appetizer, very fatty, almost like hot and spicy unsmoked bacon...also the fried watercress salad (with shrimp, chicken, squid etc. scattered about...) Priya and I got the pork leg, green curry, and stellar coconut rice. I don't like Thai green curry very much at all--I mean it's okay, but nothing I would order. except here. the green curry (with chicken) is just fantastic. I can't really pinpoint why but it's the opposite of the bland greenish stuff that usually passes for green curry. the pork leg, too, was great--the pork had a smoke ring-like corona of pink around its meaty chunks, and while there was of course lots of fat, the meat tasted almost perfumed with the spices (I brought home the leftovers and ate them on a piece of baguette as a kind of spicy pork sandwich). and it was all, of course, very spicy.



a couple of speed bumps, though. Bill's vegetarian pad Thai with mock duck was very average, not especially spicy, lacking fish sauce or even a veg substitute...the mock duck was okay. I preferred it to the extra-crispy fried mock duck at Jeeb (where we often go after happy hour), but Bill likes that a lot and did NOT.

and Lauren's tofu with Chinese broccoli was good, but the delicious-sounding fried golden bags we got causes a ruckus. Bill and Lauren immediately bit then, ate, and got funny looks on their faces. we inspected the insides--chicken! we argued over whether it was fake chicken or real chicken. we asked the waitress and she looked at us blankly and said, "You ordered it off the vegetarian menu." yes, but is it vegetarian? "yes, you ordered it off the vegetarian menu." can you check? "yes." she never returned. another waitress served us from then on--clearly the first one had passed us off to her as annoying customers. the second one was a bit more helpful and took the offending golden bags back to the kitchen, eventually returning with the verdict "it's chicken".


so great meal, but be very careful with the vegetarian options, and do not be surprised if the waitress thinks you are annoying and lies to you. we punished her with a measly 15% tip (yeah, yeah, I know...).

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