I love the land of smiles for the food and shopping (in that order). At the peak of my craze, I was flying so furiously, clocking in 7 visits in a timespan of 2 years. I love my thai food hot and spicy...so spicy I'd reach for coconut juice to calm the fiery tongue. Street food, restaurant food...I'd have risked it all...for a gastronomical treat. Speaking of which, I miss sitting in a roach infested chinese seafood restaurant at Chinatown in Bangkok tucking into barbequed big head prawns, oyster egg...hygiene was probably the last of all concerns.
Decided to drop by Jai Thai for a long deserved thai dinner. Their culinary history goes back in time, the owner's dad supposedly had a Thai restaurant in Thailand for almost 30 years before they migrated here and it's been operating since 1999, hoping to spread some of their thai love here.
Their dishes go according to small, medium and large. Small feeds 3 nicely, medium 5 and so on.
Lemongrass Drink ($2.50)
Refreshing drink with lemongrass hints, you either love or hate it.
Red Ruby ($3)
Not quite a fan of red ruby, even in the land of smiles. This was too coconutty and still not a fan of jellied chestnuts.
Mixed Platter ($12)
prawn cake, fish cake, deep fried bean curd, thai spring roll
Thai spring rolls are made of tang hoon, carrots and bean sprouts. Miss having turnip for the added crunch.
The rest were average at best.
Mango Salad ($10)
This was a less tangy and spicy version that came across as mild. Was disappointed at the lacklustre display. I was honestly all ready for the tastebuds to be piqued and challenged.
Green Curry Chicken ($7)
A tad heavy on the cream and oil, I found the texture of the chicken queer. As if it were blended with tofu. Not quite the succulent or juicy chicken you'd fine in Hainanese chicken rice.
Clear Seafood Tom Yum Soup ($7)
At last, something close though still miles apart from the most iconic thai dish ever. Lacked the punch once again though the ingredients were chockfuls and fresh. Think doryfish chunks, prawns and squid.
Deep Fried Fish with Sweet and Sour Sauce ($12)
This caused confusion, more like a cantonese dish without the pasty batter. These were lightly battered fried dory fish doused in tangy sauce. Liked it enough for seconds.
Fried Chicken with Basil Leaf ($7)
By now, I was not expecting anymore authentic thai food to come my way. Appetising blend of basil and fried chicken but the tofu texture of the chicken bothered me, still.
Fried Kang Kong ($8)
Miles apart from our Singaporean favourite, stir fried kang kong in chilli padi...this was just stir fried kang kong in fish sauce.
Pineapple Rice ($6)
Like the rest say, the pork floss scattered was the most exciting part of the dish. Clumpy rice that was way too soft for pineapple rice, this lacked the pineapple flavouring.
Pad Thai ($8)
Twirls of soft kuay teow that ended up sticking together towards the end. Some prawns were undercooked, if not stale given their soft textures. Not the best version attempted, just alright.
Coconut Jelly ($1)
Shaped like a bunny, tasted just like agar agar with coconut flesh embedded within.
I managed to put a name to this dessert that I've been eating all along.
Chestnut-corn jelly with a layer of coconut cream.
Mango Glutinous Rice ($4.50)
At long last, the sweet finish that matched expectations. Warm, sticky and sweet glutinous rice when paired with slightly sour mango...they perfected this. The way the flavours were such opposites yet were so complimentary. Yum! Possibly the only item that had my fork dancing.
Dishes have been tweaked to suit the local palette. Northern thai cuisine is what they seem to specialise in, where the flavours are watered down. I miss having a runny nose after the stinging spices or tears in my eyes after a spicy meal...authentic thai this is not. Warm and prompt service is what they offer, decent food at more than decent prices. If it's any discomfort, I found stray hairs embedded in my food.
Regular crowds streaming in are a clear indication of its popularity and affordability.
Jai Thai Restaurant
205 East Coast Rd