Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Review: Erawan Thai Restaurant

Name: Erawan Thai Restaurant
Address: 2724 Erie Boulevard E, Syracuse, NY
Neighborhood: Salt Springs (Erie Boulevard East)
Menu: View Menu
Cuisine: Thai
Alcohol: Beer & Wine
Hours: Monday-Saturday 11:30 AM to 2:30 PM, 5 PM to 9:30 PM
Parking: Private lot
Accepts credit cards: Yes

I pulled into Erawan on Erie Boulevard on a Tuesday evening. Parking is available in front of the building and in a private lot in back. Inside the restaurant, you'll find tables and friendly servers ready to seat you. The decor of Erawan is a little under par, in my opinion. My guess is they haven't changed the look of this place in quite some time, as it looks a little drab and dark. But sometimes you don't need to change things like that if you serve great food. And Erawan definitely proved that point.

The order...

Singha: $3.85
Paw Peea Sod: $1.49
Panang Gai: $10.99
Total cost with tax and tip: $19.47

Paw Peea Sod (Spring Roll: Fresh rice paper roll stuffed with pork, shrimp, lettuce and coriander, accompanied with dipping sauce)

Fairly simple ingredients, but all fresh and served cold. The rice paper was very chewy and the dipping sauce, which I'm guessing was some mixture of rice wine vinegar, sugar, ginger, and topped with peanuts, was tasty - almost like a sweet and sour sauce but thin and tangy.

Panang Gai (Chicken in a red curry paste, coconut milk, green peas, lime leaves, and sweet basil leaves)

They do spiciness on request here. I asked for "medium" and boy am I glad I did. This was soooo good. Just the right amount of heat with perfectly cooked chicken and peas in a hot and sweet sauce with curry and coconut milk. I really could have eaten the entire thing, but thought I should conserve some for tomorrow's lunch. My experience with Thai cuisine is somewhat limited, but this was the best Thai dish that I've ever had. So good.

I also loved the serving dishes, especially for the rice. Very unique.

Things of note...

- Erawan has gift certificates and does take-out as well. Call for details.

It's really hard to rip on Erawan about anything. The service was friendly and the food was excellent. The only thing that's lacking is the interior of the restaurant, but that really doesn't matter when you serve such a flawless meal.

My rating of Erawan Thai Restaurant:

Your rating of Erawan Thai Restaurant:

Erawan Thai Restaurant on Urbanspoon


Bob and Tia said...

Wow. You certainly have very ecclectic tastes. You're definitely the right person to write a dining guide and it seems like you're getting out a lot more. How many do you figure you need to do to have enough book material?

JoeBass123 said...

i'm not sure what my current thoughts are on a book, but if i do end up writing one, i'm thinking that i would still need to review more places - with more emphasis on downtown restaurants. right now i'm averaging about 4 reviews per month, so maybe by mid-summer of 2009 i can have about 50 places reviewed, which might be enough material for a small review guide of sorts.

i've been having a lot of fun writing reviews so far. the blog has been a nice little project to work on. i've got some more things i'd like to add in the coming months as well like some googlemaps features, "top 5" categories, etc... so for now, the blog has been a nice little outlet for me to get some initial thoughts out.

indiake said...

Wow, I'm actually really disappointed in reading this. While at SYR this summer (July, 2009), we were recommended Erawan as the best thai food in the area.(Later we went to Appethaizing, which was better but not great). We were very shocked however, when we arrived and received horrible service, which I tried to overlook because we were told the food was amazing. Turns out the food was the WORST Thai I have ever had. We ordered Phad Thai, one of the curries (sorry I don't remember which one) and a chicken with cashew nuts. These are our staples when we go to Thai food and I could not even finish them, they were so bad. I wonder if you ever go back and review places again because I honestly can't see how anyone would think it was good anymore.

Josef Lorenz said...

sorry to hear of your experience. originally, i didn't think much of erawan (i thought it was all too bland) but it has grown on me over the last year or so. 4.5 out of 5 might be too high of a ranking, but i think it all depends on what you order. i really like all the curry dishes, but i've had the pad thai once and really didn't care for it at all (from what i remember i didn't finish it either).

if you're in the area again, you might want to try lao village in downtown. though not the best place for a sit-down meal, it's a little less sauce-oriented and a bit fresher and spicier.