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Entries in Thai (10)


Ruuthai’s Kitchen: Real Thai in Bridgeport CT

Word’s out. There’s a new Thai place in Bridgeport worth traveling for. Ruuthai is a little family-run restaurant making authentic Thai dishes. Even better, Ruuthai offers dishes rarely seen in these parts, like mussel pancakes, boat noodles and steamed red curry fish custard. And then there are the desserts. Thai desserts are decidedly weird to Americans. Pork in a dessert? What?! Yes, and it’s good.

Ruuthai has been open almost five months. It’s in a residential neighborhood off North Avenue. The storefront is cheerfully decorated with orange and lime accents, and pink and purple swirly, girly flower stencils. The effect is simple and charming. They’ve added a few more tables recently (they’re getting busier), and they do a lot of take-out, but I believe in eating food when it’s at its best – moments after Def Ruangsikul, head chef, has prepared it.

If you sit down to eat you will probably meet Chef Ruangsikul’s daughter Dif. Dif McGeough is the manager and waitress. She was born in Thailand and raised in the United States, and she’s a knowledgeable and gently humorous guide.

Over the course of several visits, here’s what we’ve tried:

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Rainbow Thai Opens in Westport 

Yes, Virginia, there IS a great Thai food to be found in Fairfield County. The new RAINBOW THAI at 5 Bridge Street in Westport is just what Virginia (and all the rest of us who feared that a great, local Tom Yum Gung soup might not really exist) ordered. RAINBOW THAI is tiny and, not to its advantage, finds itself in that ill fated location in the Bridge Market complex that hasn't to date been a lucky spot for restaurants. Many an eatery has peaked and faded faster than a shooting star in this locale but I think Rainbow Thai has staying power. Why? The food is just so damn good.

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WAFU Asian Bistro Opens in Southport

If you Google or Bing the word "Wafu" it translates to "Japanese-style," but when I asked Elaine Chen, the proprietor of the new WAFU Asian Bistro in Southport, her definition was "peace and harmony." The new Wafu, located at 3671 Post Road (formerly Friendly's) seems to be a little bit of both. Chen, from the FUJIAN PROVINCE of China, and her husband (the restaurant's lead sushi chef), have created an ASIAN establishment where Japanese, Chinese and Thai food mesh perfectly in a serene and sophisticated environment. Although it's difficult to telll from the exterior, the decor once inside is New York chic (and perhaps a tiny bit over the top with Swarski Chandeliers and neon-blue lighting). Menus are presented on ipads and you sit comfortably at your glossy tables on your white-leathered booth. Sure, it's a bit shi shi, but shi shi works at WAFU. The food is good for a "multi-culture" menu, the decor is funky and, though it looks fancy, it turns out to be a very kid-friendly establishment.

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Shanghai Asian Bistro: Shanghai Opens Second Location in Norwalk

Occasionally, we like to get a few opinions on a restaurant. Here are two shorts from Cathy Siroka and James Gribbon on Shanghai Bistro.

If you’re in South Norwalk and want a simple, easy place to go before a movie or out with the kids – try Shanghai Asian Bistro. They recently opened a second location at 124 Washington St., with their first one in Westport at 1715 Post Rd East.  Owner, John Jiang, had been carefully looking for a second location for years, and has seen such a huge change in the traffic and excitement in downtown Norwalk, and finally felt that “now was the right time.” 

While the menu has the Chinese classics like shrimp with duck sauce and General Tsao’s  chicken, the restaurant also offers an array of other Asian inspired dishes and many ways to customize your order according to your tastes and dietary preferences.  Jiang explains his menu as “all-Asian, not just Chinese, a sampling of the flavors of China, Thailand, Vietnam and Japan.”

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Chef Nicole: Thai Meatballs with Dipping Sauce

I made these Thai Meatballs with Dipping Sauce last week for my family and they were devoured in record time. Served in a lettuce leaf or over rice, they are big on flavor, but are not overly adventurous for little palates. These are perfect for busy families as the prep time is minimal. Try them in your house, and let us know what you think. 

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Ten China Bistro in Wilton: 10 For 10

Why TEN? The new TEN China Bistro in Wilton had a lot to live up to, giving itself a number like that. We would be the ones to decide if TEN was indeed an appropriate rating. We were diners on a mission. Chef/Owner Eric Xie would have a lot of "splainin" to do if the food at TEN ended up as anything less. There was only one way to find out...EAT! So eat we did. There are many reasons to try this new Asian fusion restaurant, (in the same plaza as SOUP ALLEY). Would we give it a 10? Well, here's the verdict:

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Thai Coconut Curry Lentil Soup c/o Healthy Living Blog

Jeanette Chen is a resident of New Canaan. Her Healthy Living Blog is dedicated to promoting a healthy lifestyle through good nutrition.

Lately, I've been craving both Thai coconut curry soup and lentil soup. Perhaps, it's because I wanted to relive the heady bowl of Thai Coconut Curry Noodle Soup I had for lunch last week when it was wet and dank outside. There is something warming and completely comforting about spicy Asian noodle soups. Thick lentil soups have also been on my mind, as it's getting cooler out, calling for heartier fare. These two comfort foods inspired me to come up with a recipe for Thai Coconut Curry Lentil soup.

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Flavorful Lunch Bargain @ Thai Pearl in Ridgefield

If you're looking to give your brown bag a break or if you just can't face another sandwich, you'd be hard pressed to find a better and more affordable lunch alternative than Thai Pearl in Ridgefield. With a prix fixe lunch menu featuring ten traditional Thai dishes and three courses starting at just $8.95, I'd say it's easily one of the most affordable and most satisfying lunches in town.

On a recent snowy afternoon, I began with the shumai as a warm and savory amuse bouche to start the meal. A combination of shrimp, tofu and vegetables fill three wonton wrappers. I presume these are steamed and then pan fried given their chewy exterior and crisp edges, and then finished with a chili and soy sauce. The other lunch appetizer options include soup, salad or spring roll. One course down, two more to go.

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A Festival of Flavor @ Little Thai Kitchen

It was a Saturday night and I was tired of the standard nouveau American fare. I was in the mood for the spicy sweet flavors of Thai cooking, but where to go in Fairfield County? A friend whose taste buds I trust told me her go-to spot was Little Thai Kitchen or LTK, with Greenwich, Darien, and NYC locations. We opted for Darien, (right across from the train station) and our party of four headed out in the pouring rain to seek out dinner. 

Walking into LTK is sort of like walking into a West Elm catalogue. It is modern and sleek with splashes of bright color giving it a nice clean design. The two dining spaces to either side of the front door are small, as a good chunk of their business is take-out, but we found that with the lights dimmed it was surprisingly cozy and well appointed. We took a seat next to the large corner window and discreetly checked out the food on the other guests' tables. It looked good. It smelled good. We quietly prayed to whatever God worked for each of us that we had found some decent Thai food in this town.

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Pho Mekong: Thai? Vietnamese? Who Cares...It's Good!

UPDATE: Pho Mekong has closed. Shake Shack coming soon!

There are certain meals you just can't cook at home...especially as a white woman. We have tried in our local gourmet club to master the art of Asian cooking, but after a full day's search for the 30 obscure ingredients required for a basic dish like Pad Thai, we decided our next craving for coconut and curry would be better satisfied with take-out. We had heard rumors of a local favorite, Pho Mekong, on the Westport/Southport border. Needing a quick pre-movie bite last week, we headed over to find out if the food held up to the buzz....

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