Admittedly, I am a Thai food snob. I recently moved from California where the Thai food is amazing (just like in Thailand), but have constantly been disappointed by the Thai restaurants in New York City. So, for my first review (hello Couch Sessions!) I decided to go to SriPraPhai in Woodside, which I have heard is one of the best Thai restaurants in NYC.
We arrived at SriPraPhai and the wait was about 15 minutes, because we asked to sit outside in the patio area. The patio is beautiful and spacious.
When we got the menu, I was very excited by the selection. A lot of the food they offer isn’t available in most Thai restaurants in the United States. And the dessert menu was very extensive. You should’ve seen my eyes light up like a kid in the Apple store.
We started with the Tom Kha Gai soup. It’s a light, yet creamy soup with lemongrass and kaffir lime leaf accents, so it’s salty, spicy and sour. I’m not sure why, but most Thai restaurants in the states tend to make dishes a tad sweeter than they should be. The soup, unfortunately, was one of those aforementioned dishes, so at SriPraPhai. But overall, it wasn’t bad. I just wouldn’t order it again.
Then we ordered the Roasted Duck Salad. I loved this salad. I could taste the freshness of the sour mango, cilantro, red onions, lime, chili, garlic, spring onion and tomatoes. The saltiness of the roast duck was a nice contrast to the other strong flavors, and the duck was perfectly roasted.
Next, we got the Pad-See-Ew, a very common Thai dish made with sweet soy sauce. You can find Pad-See-Ew at almost any Thai restaurant. This version was also a bit sweet. The noodles were mushy, too! You can even see how mushy the noodles were in the picture below.
We also ordered Sauté Morning Glory Leaves in Oyster Sauce, which is one of my favorite Thai dishes. Usually you eat it over rice, or even rice porridge. It was a good, solid, authentic dish.
And yes, we got another entrée. Food excites me, so I like to order and try a lot of different things to better assess a place. The last entrée we got was Shrimp Paste Fried Rice with Chicken and Dry Shrimp. When I ordered this dish, the waitress asked me if I had it before. I think because it’s a very shrimpy/fishy taste and many people aren’t used to such a strong flavor at first. This is another one of my favorite dishes that I rarely find stateside but love in Thailand. It’s basically rice fried in shrimp paste, served with egg, red onion, dry shrimp, sweet chicken, green beans, sour mango, lime and dried pepper. You mix it all up, and can savor all the tastes – spicy, sour, salty, sweet.
Although I wasn’t blown away by SriPraPhai, probably because it was over-hyped, it was a nice experience. The wait staff was very friendly. The vibe was nice. The food selection was definitely the best part of the restaurant. Some foods were good, some were okay. But hey, none of it was bad. I will probably be returning because although I ordered a lot of food, there’s still a lot on the menu that I want to eat, and I’m hungry!
SriPraPhai Thai Restaurant
64-13 39th Avenue
Woodside, NY 11377