Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A Splash of Thai

If you're a regular reader here, you would know that when I lived in Hell's Kitchen, there was plenty of Thai places to choose from. Although, I recently found out that my favorite place is now closed?! Is this what happens when I leave the area? Sigh... Anyway, one of the best things about living in NYC is that the variety of cuisines and restaurants is endless. Especially with Asian cuisines. Man o man did I love eating types of Asian food. But now that I'm in NJ, good Asian food is much more difficult to come by. Luckily there's a good Asian grocer not too far away so that I may make my own food all the time. But when I just want to eat out, the choices are a bit more limited.
A Splash of Thai boasts a pretty sign near the Westfield train station. It's hard to miss them. They advertise pretty good lunch deals but we were there for dinner. As a group of 4, we sat near the window and commented about the atmosphere. Although there were very few tables occupied (it was a weekday), the service was still friendly and the place looked modern and clean.

We decided to share a bunch of plates as this was our first time there. Also, a couple of the guests claimed not to be too hungry. We started with the Thai spring rolls ($8) with glass noodles, vegetables, and a sweet peach sauce. These were meh for me. In general spring rolls aren't that good to me. Most places just don't know how to make them really good. Either the filling sucks or the wrapper isn't crispy. Or both.

For our main dishes to share, we chose the Panang curry ($18) with chicken. The sweet coconut milk, herbaceous kaffir lime leaves and Thai basil, ground peanut, and fresh red bell pepper and snow peas was decent. Not the best but it was certainly doable especially with a bowl of white rice. A good heat level that wasn't overbearing nor mild. Just enough to say hello. The chicken was tender and not dried out while the vegetables tasted fresh and held their texture well.
The Three Flavor Red Snapper ($23) was showcased well. A whole red snapper scored and fried until the meat was cooked through leaving it juicy and tender but also retaining a crispy skin. Unfortunately, that skin was covered up in a "spicy" tamarind sauce. I put spicy in quotation marks because it wasn't the least bit spicy. In fact, it was sweet. Too sweet. I really disliked it and ate around the cloying sauce.
And of course we ordered a dish that we had gotten in almost every Thai restaurant: Pad See Ew. This broad rice noodle dish with beef. egg, and broccoli in a sweet brown sauce. The noodles were overcooked and the sauce again was too sweet. Really, really sweet. Normally, I'm used to Chinese broccoli with this dish which is what I prefer. Unfortunately, they only offer American broccoli.
A Splash of Thai had some hits and misses. The sauces can be too sweet playing to the American palate. It's not a winner to me but it may be the only choice I have for Thai food at home. It may be time to open up Andy Ricker's cookbook.

A Splash of Thai
321 South Avenue West
Westfield, NJ 07090
(908) 232-0402

1 comment:

  1. korean food is generally much better in jersey though


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