September 7, 2006

A Thaimely Dinner

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Making decisions has never been easy for me. I constantly reassess situations, taking each and every factor into account before I can even begin to evaluate the choices in front of me and make up my mind. It is a difficult, indecisive life I lead; a life, which is not made any easier by the multitude of decisions I, as an average college student, must make on a daily basis. What am I going to major in? What will I do with the rest of my life? And, most importantly, what am I going to eat for dinner?
If you are like me, then this last question probably consumes at least half an hour of your day. And, if a restaurant is involved, you’re looking at a good forty-five minutes of discussion before everyone in your dinner party is satisfied with the chosen restaurant. As a frequent eating-outer, this decision has become a significant part of my weekend routine. However, nothing could prepare me for the difficult task of choosing the very first restaurant I was to review. I spent days contemplating, asking everyone I knew for recommendations, and doing a bit of online research. And in the end, proximity and economy won out and I found myself, with a friend in tow, walking the three minutes from our apartment to the Little Thai House on Dryden Road for Sunday night dinner.
I must be honest: I am not an expert in Thai food. In fact, the only Thai cuisine I have sampled before this visit came from Taste of Thai, an expensive, but very delicious Thai restaurant situated on the Commons. However, as I was thoroughly impressed with that food experience, I was very excited to try a Thai restaurant so close to home. Furthermore, having left all of my class reading to the very last minute, finding a restaurant that would supply me with dinner in less than five minutes was essential.
Upon entering the Little Thai House, I was not surprised at the layout of the restaurant. The counter, filled with a selection of about ten different Thai dishes, ranging from noodles to vegetables to curry tofu dishes, is directly in front of the entrance and the rest of the restaurant is scantily decorated and contains several tables in which to sit and eat. The price list is hung right above the counter, making it very easy to discern just how much dinner will cost before ordering. Seeing that two items cost only about six dollars, I was able to order to order Pad Thai Noodles, a chicken dish, and a vegetable spring roll for only seven dollars total — plenty of food for a small amount of money.
The décor in the restaurant did not appear too inviting so my friend and I ordered our food as takeout and three minutes later were sitting around our kitchen table ready to dig in. I tried the Pad Thai Noodles first and was mildly impressed. The dish lacked a distinguishing flavor and so did not taste like much of anything; it wasn’t horrible, just not incredibly impressionable. Next I tried the chicken dish, which, to my delight, was extremely tasty — a bit on the sweet side, with a spicy aftertaste. It reminded me of a popular takeout Chinese dish, and, combined with the complementary white rice, made for a very delicious course altogether. The spring roll, although a bit too oily for my liking, tasted very nice when dipped in the sweet duck sauce provided on the side. My friend was generally satisfied with her dishes, which included Yellow Curry Tofu, Spicy Red Curry Chicken, and a chicken spring roll. She was a bit surprised to find that the tofu dish was actually spicier than the spicy chicken dish and, after a couple of more bites, expressed some disappointment with the dry, tasteless quality of the tofu. However, she was pleased with the chicken dish and enjoyed her spring roll dipped in duck sauce as well.
In all, the meal was satisfactory and exactly what I expected from a take-out Thai restaurant. The food was not exemplary, but I was also not displeased with the quality of the meal. I do not know if I will be visiting the Little Thai House again in the near future, but perhaps one day, when my decision-making skills are at an all-time low, I will visit 202 Dryden Road for a quick, inexpensive, and generally decent dinner.