Monday, December 22, 2008

Review: Little Thai House

Name: Little Thai House
Address: 2863 Erie Blvd E, Syracuse, NY
Neighborhood: Salt Springs (Erie Boulevard East)
Menu: View Menu
Cuisine: Thai
Hours: Monday-Friday 11:30 AM to 3 PM, 5 PM to 10 PM, Saturday-Sunday 1PM to 10 PM
Parking: Private Lot
Accepts Credit Cards: Yes
Take Out: Yes
Alcohol: Full Bar

On a Sunday night with a hankering for Thai food, I thought I would try my luck at the Little Thai House on Erie Boulevard. Despite the previous Northeastern snowstorm a few days earlier, parking was easy with a plowed, private lot located in the back. Little Thai House doesn't look like much from the outside (and actually looks more like a former Wendy's painted white), but the interior is fairly nice and a legitimate step up from most Erie Boulevard eateries that aren't chain restaurants. The atmosphere is a tad more intimate than what I was looking for, and even leaned towards the quiet / awkward side, but it was a nice change of pace and made for quite a relaxing Sunday dinner. There was no crowd here on this night, but if it happens to be packed when you step in, there's a quant mini-bar in the corner that offers seating while you're waiting for a table.

You may need a few minutes to look over the menu as there are quite a lot of dishes and they are not separated by vegetable or meat categories. At any rate... The order...

Satay: $5.95
Pad Thai: $11.95
Total Money Spent with Tax & Tip: $23.33

The Satay was alright - skewers of sliced charcoal-grilled strips of chicken, marinated in coconut milk, lemon grass, and imported Thai curry spices and served with a peanut sauce and a cucumber dip. I did like the option of having two dipping sauces with this. Between the two, I preferred the cucumber dip as there was more flavor in there with the chopped red onions and carrots. It was tangy and a bit like a thin sweet and sour sauce. The peanut sauce was a little bland and I thought it could have been a tad spicier. To be picky, my chicken was a hair under-cooked and I would have liked to have had a better presence of coconut milk and lemon grass, as I could not really taste either of them in the marinade.

The Pad Thai was pretty good - Thai rice noodles sauteed with shrimp, chicken, egg, bean sprouts, and roasted ground peanuts in a tamarind sauce. Though there was a ton of food on the plate. (This was enough to last me for 3 meals). And I'm not sure how I felt about the plating and presentation. The thinly sliced carrots were a nice touch, but everything else was sort of plopped on the plate - with a pile of peanuts on one side. I only received 3 small to medium sized shrimp with the dish, but even so, they should have been placed on top and not hidden underneath the mass of noodles. And I'm also not sure as to why it was garnished with a lemon and not a lime which is more traditional of Thai cuisine. But given that, I thought it was a decent dish of Pad Thai. The rice noodles, despite being plentiful, were cooked perfectly and the bean sprouts were crispy and fresh. Though my one issue was the tamarind sauce. As you may or may not know, Thai food is generally supposed to be a balance of up to 5 flavors: spicy, sweet, sour, salty, and bitter. This sauce in particular definitely weighed on the "sour" side. Enough to make my lips pucker a bit.

Some things of note: The beer selection is dismal - only Singha and Singha Light, but the wine selection is good. They also serve Saki as well.

There really isn't too much more to say about Little Thai House. It was a completely mediocre dining experience, which I guess is better than an awful one. Would I go back? Yeah, I suppose. But I would try some different dishes than what I ordered.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Little Thai House has recently changed ownership and is vastly improved. The chef is from a well respected restaurant in Thailand and the food can be summed up in one word...awesome. Having been to Thailand many times myself, I can honestly say that the Little Thai House has the most authentic tasting Thai food in Syracuse.