Sadly, I didn't make it to the Blogger Mini-Happy Hour. But I did get out at some point last night, after a week-long intestinal flu - bleeeh - to get some food. After finding, by chance, an awesome parking space right in front of the Hippo, I took that as a sign and went in for a pint of Guinness (should I really be drinking beer yet? Oh well). BTW: look who's coming back to Charm City in January. Nope, it's Varla Jean Merman. Anyway, to avoid losing the great parking space, I walked to one of the local places to eat. My mind was on Ethiopian but I found myself uncontrollably drawn to the Washington Monument. Before I knew it I was walking into My Thai.
I've heard mixed reviews about this place, but one thing seems to be certain: the more distance it puts between now and opening night, the better it gets. Things weren't too great when it first opened, but they are better now (Christine, who stopped updating her page in August, gave some mixed early reviews of My Thai - the City Paper and the Baltimore Sun give it better reviews). So I wanted to try it out for myself, now that we were almost 6 months from opening night.
The restaurant looks just like Minato with some Thai statues planted here and there. Of course this makes perfect sense, what with Minato having moved from here to its new location (I liked this location better anyway). The food, I am happy to say, was satisfying. One word of caution, though: go with an empty stomach. I got a lot of food for my dollar, for the most part:
- Their tom kha gai soup - I have to try this at every Thai restaurant I go to, and any Thai place worth its nam pla will have at least two good entrées: their pad thai and their tom kha gai soup. For just $4, you get a huge bowl of the stuff - a quantity that would normally cost twice that at most Thai restaurants. And everything about it was superb (I don't use that word often) - it was tangier, lemongrass-ier, coconut-tier, galangal-lier than most I have eaten. Two only two gripes I had were the undercookedness of the mushrooms (which seemed like they were cut up and thrown in just before they brought it to me) and the amount of chicken, but even that was at least adequate. And no irritating chewy pieces of lemongrass to pick out of your teeth.
- Their selection of sushi - It is also cheaper than I am used to, especially their rolls. For $5 I got three large slices of flounder sashimi, arranged tastefully in front of me.
- Their goong pik kaur - This was one of many entrées that, considering the neighborhood, was relatively cheap. At $14 ($10 if you get it for lunch) it was one of the most expensive things on the menu (though I avoided the House specialties, which generally start at that price and just go up). This was breaded and deep-fried shrimp in a sweet-spicy-tangy sauce that makes the breading easily fall off (oh well). These were good-sized shrimp - I could only finish five of them. They're not super jumbo ones, but they're not salad shrimp either. And all were nestled inside an arrangement of slightly steamed broccoli, and came with a separate bowl of rice. One thought did run through my mind: you could easily find this at Friday's, but it's much better here. I got this and the soup in a to-go bag.
- Their hot sake - The one big exception, pricewise, is their alcohol, and this must be where they make their money. For about $8.50, I got a large carafe of hot sake that seemed not as large as other larges I have drunk before. I usually get a small, for about $4.50 at most Japanese restaurants. I guess there are no smalls here. So if you want red, white or rice wine, or any other alcohol at My Thai, expect to pay a lot for it. It was pretty good sake, and I still had trouble finishing it (I didn't say it was a small, just that it was smaller than other small sakes I've had in the past), but I wouldn't have gotten it had I known. BTW: their sakes are not on their wine list. You have to ask to see their hand-written sake menu, and it only contains the cold sakes, which start at $9.