Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Thai One On...And One Sauce For All

Thai One On (Kennedy & 14th)

There's been a lot of hype about this restaurant, and it's been a while since it came to Markham, so it was just a matter of time until we finally made it thru their doors. People have been raving about it, but that doesn't mean a thing until we've actually dined there.

This place is small, and I mean shoebox small. Theres only about 8-10 tables, so quaint-ity is there. Not a problem, as some of the best food comes out of the smallest kitchens. Decor is simple, with a few random but still Thai-influenced touches. One thing that struck me was the TV in the top corner showing TVO. No wonder Navin recommended this place. I shared my table with Steve and a dude named Robert Reich.

So my rule of thumb for all Asian restaurants is to judge the food by the apps. So naturally we ordered their Hot & Sour soup. As everyone that knows me knows, I'm obsessed with Hot & Sour soup. At the top of my list comes Spadina Garden's H & S, with everyone else's coming in at a distant second. But their's was not bad. Very Spicy. Even for me, and I love spice. Aside from that, taste, texture and heartiness was there. Good start.

So we ordered 4 dishes, and 3 rices;

Thai Basil Chicken:
Chicken with peppers, sauce was nice, but no Basil. Only one small leaf. And it wasn't Thai basil (which is Purple), it was just regular basil. No biggie, still a nice dish. Apparently, according to my sister, "Salad King's is better". I thought it was good.

Thai Spicy Eggplant:
My personal Fav, even though the eggplant was a little over cooked (almost soupy), still had a nice base sauce (but was the same as the Basil Chicken), also with peppers. Not really spicy. Good call Navin.

Beef Pad Thai:
Meh. Very nice presentation, interesting concept serving the Pad Thai in the middle, with portions of Bean Sprouts, Green Onion slivers, and crushed peanuts all around the periphery. Too bad the Pad Thai was blando. The beef was a bit tough and the sauce was nutty, almost too sweet.

Shrimp with Lychee:
This one sounded so exotic on the menu that we had to go for it. Ithinkwemadeabigmistake! Over-battered scrimps made this dish very unappetizing. What can I say, I've been spoiled by China Cottage's house shrimp. Now nothing else will do. I think this dish was a good concept in theory- but its' execution was poorly developed. Canned lychees do not make for a good sauce. And you cannot sauce something that has been deep-fried, it negates the whole idea of deep-frying. The shrimps cannot be crispy when doused, it's just not gourmetically possible.

Coconut Rice:
Very Sweet! This tasted like a dessert, like a Thai version of Kheer (Indian rice pudding). I wouldn't mind this after my meal, but not with it.

Wild Rice w/ Peanut Sauce:
This was horrible. It was like a log of rice. We sent this one back.

Jasmine Rice:
Just rice.


Service: 4/5- Nothing to complain about, service was quick (we were the only ones there). Ample water- toppage.

Decor: 2.5/5- Not too fancy, but not bushy either. Just right.

Food: 3/5- Definately a large menu that needs to be explored a second time.

Price: 3/5- Pretty decent considering how much food we got.

Overall: 3 STARS out of 5

Overall, their portions were large, which made for good value. We paid about $60 for 3 of us, no drinks, and ample leftovers. Food quality was good, and I would definately give this place a second chance. 2/4 good dishes means I'll be back. Service was good, the waitress was friendly and accommodating, and the place was clean. Nice minner diningware also.

Sippi would love this place, as they "amply Sauce it UP".

Note: You can not actually Thai One On at Thai One On, as they do not serve thullard. Go figure.


Navin Vaswani (@eyebleaf) said...

good post bro. not sure why they have TVO on, but BIG UPS. paikin is a rudey. but i'm with you, i'm off restaurants that don't serve thullard. why so?

Hima Batavia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hima Batavia said...

they have another branch on Dundas West, and the decor is actually a lot nicer. i loved the lychee dish (minus the shrimp), but now that I think about it, they did taste kind of canned. good post!

Anonymous said...

I didn't know that there is a Thai restaurant in Markham. Gasp!
I will definitely try it out and NOT order the Basil Chicken (if Salad king's is better...that's really horrible, b/c I thought it was mediocre), Rice (that sounds really weird) and lycee shrimp.


ps. I'm on a mission to find the best vegetarian foods. So, I will be continuously checking your blog for recommendations.

Culinarian said...

Sherrie- point well taken, I will definately find some nice vegan restaurants to sample for you.