Thursday, August 1, 2013

Thai Bistro: Authentic Thai Dishes Even the Kids Can Enjoy

Wazzup Pilipinas!

It is not very often that I get to have time to post on Facebook the photos of the food that I am currently enjoying at that very moment. I was surprised I found myself very generous and proud to share to the world what we were currently dining on. I usually just post it a day after, or just post one photo just to let people know where I am right that very moment. However, the food were just too good to keep to ourselves, I had to share it with the rest of the world - or at least to my friends and subscribers on Facebook.

What even motivated me to boast of the food was the mere fact that even my kids enjoyed the treat. At first, I really thought they won't be too fond of the dishes the restaurant will be serving us. But I was totally surprised my kids really appreciated the food at Thai Bistro.

It makes me wonder how mature their taste buds have grown already to even like authentic Thai spicy foods.  My kids have tasted American, Vietnamese, Japanese, Chinese, Italian, Korean, and many other dishes but it was their very first time to try Thai.

I've been to Thailand, the longest of visits was a total of 7 days, but I made sure that I get to try authentic Thai delicacies everyday. I felt it funny to try other foods because its our opportunity to expose ourselves in the culture and tradition by embracing their original specialties, and not the fusion or influenced food. I even courageously tried the street foods and those nasty insects that they even call a delicacy. When in Thailand, eat what the Thais eat. I could compare and swear that my experience in Thai Bistro is like being in Thailand. Well, actually - I believe I enjoyed the Thai experience more at Thai Bistro!

My two boys shared the Thai Bistro dinner with me after we attended an event meant for the kids (and the kids at heart like me). Some good samaritans brought back my childhood Bible-based cartoon TV series (a new version) and they are also showing the classic one all over again during weekends. They are now doing a series of mall tours to share to more people the good news. I have to admit I missed the cartoons that could relate the Bible stories with fun and coolness other than Superbook, (the other one with a flying house only follows second).

Apparently, the milk tea craze has taken over the Philippines. You can even find one here - though they only have two kinds, the first one we tried was actually very competitive enough to go on head-to-head with the popular brands and their leading milk tea concoctions. I had to try it for myself when my kids told me they were oh so yummy!

I originally ordered for the Cucumber drink - and it was so refreshingly something new for me.

My older kid has chosen to try the Pandan drink. Just like me, he was so experimental and willing to try out something new. The verdict? He was the first one to finish his drink - indicative that he really liked it - and went on to order something different again to quench his thirst and curiosity.

Have you ever seen something so beautifully presented like art? plus quite tasty too! It was my first time to see and eat an appetizer called Mieng Kham (Php 180 for three pieces) . It is a traditional snack from Thailand that consists of chaphlu leaves filled with some roasted coconut shavings, shallots, bird's eye chili, ginger, garlic, lime, roasted peanuts, dried shrimps or any other combination that offer "eating many things in one bite" - just as what Mieng or Miang means. ...and Kham also literally means "food wrapped in leaves."

The Choo Chee Roti (Php 195) is buttered roti that comes with red curry paste or sauce. Roti is generally a South Asian bread made from stoneground wholemeal flour, traditionally known as atta flour.

Fabulous presentation and equally fabulous taste (This is just one of those dishes that comes decorated with orchids). The craftsmanship on the sauce was also so artistically done. That alone deserves high praises already....and I thought they just do that sort of thing on coffee.

We ate it all up in just a few minutes. It's a world record for us! That's how great it was.

As luck would have it, the Thai Ravioli (Php 295) comes in three pieces just right for the three of us to try them out - and oh boy! We sure got filled up quite easily with just this dish alone.

I think I'm beginning to like spicy foods already because the spicy sauce was just right for me and my kids. The two were just 13 and 10 of age, and I was glad they enjoyed it with no questions asked except "What's the next dish coming out?"

The Pink Pomelo Salad (Php 360) was a huge serving. I understand why it's a bit pricey considering its not a main dish. The pomelos were just finely ripe, and mixed with shrimps, strips of chicken and herbs.

I sort of splurged on the succulent pomelos at first before I tried combining my bite with the shrimps and chicken strips. 
My first try of a Pomelo salad was at a Vietnamese restaurant in Makati, but it was sadly destroyed when I ate another one at another restaurant of a certain 5-star hotel also located in Makati, but this third encounter brought back my appreciation of the Pomelo salad. 
You won't regret ordering this as the mixture of flavors, that were probably brought out by the herbs and spices, were fascinating.

The Lamb Shank Massaman (Php 120 / 100 grams) with lamb shanks that were prepared through 8 hours of slow cooking to make it tender and almost separating from the bone so easily was to be considered our star of the show. Not because it was the most expensive, but because it was so good that we literally swept it out of its bone. I think, aside from the bone, only a few sweet potatoes and some bits of fried noodles were left. The Massaman curry sauce was splendid in taste that I swear if I was not only full, I could have topped it on my rice and ate it all up.

They have a lot of fancy rice at Thai Bistro but we chose to have the Steamed Jasmine Rice (Php 65) so we could appreciate the true taste of the dishes when combined with rice. I actually didn't touched mine and just shared a portion from one of my kids because I wanted to have more room for the Thai dishes rather than the rice.

The Sala Daeng (Php 328) was our second favorite. They are actually lemon grass florets stuffed with chicken and served with sweet chili sauce.

There was some thrill in opening up the florets and getting the chicken out while you smell the exciting lemongrass infused aroma. I was actually touched and very proud of my kids when they said, "Let's not eat all of it and bring back some for Mommy and Ate". It was indeed too good to keep to ourselves so we decided to bring home three of the six pieces.

They also wanted to bring home the rest of the dessert namely the Takhoo Thai (Php 180 for 5 pieces) and the Sticky Rice with Mango (Php 210) but I told them it might be difficult to pack them so it might get ruined on our way home.

But that's actually good news for them as they ate the remaining dessert. My kids were asking me which of the desserts did I order and I just told them to wait for them to come out. The anticipation grew and they were hoping for three desserts including the Apple Pie.... Sorry to disappoint them because I only ordered two kinds. But they were already more than happy with the two. I promised them we will have the other desserts available on our next visit to Thai Bistro.

The Takhoo Thai gelatinous corn and coconut cream with miniature "sagos" at the bottom wrapped in banana leaves were appreciated more than the Sticky Rice with Mango as we are very familiar with the "suman" as one of a Filipino favorite as well.

Though we specifically told the resto manager to please ask the chef to moderate the "anghang" or spiciness for the benefit of the kids, the taste of Thai Bistro dishes speaks a lot already even without the full spiciness of the food.

My elder son never removed any of the chilis in his food even though it was very evident. He could have taken it off but he did not. My youngest was not that experimental, but he quickly followed his brother's way - and neither of them complained.

However, I think they had two orders of the Thai Milk Tea to fight the spiciness. Later my sons informed me it was not because of the spice in the food but because the milk tea was really good. I guess Thai Bistro can do well with their milk teas too.

To conclude, I've tried other Thai restaurants here in the Philippines and there is none yet that I can fully say that I appreciated the food well enough other than Thai Bistro. It is a restaurant where you can bring the entire family, even your young ones, as the management and staff definitely understands what you will appreciate. They will moderate the spiciness or recommend what's perfect for you. Try to become more adventurous as you may also be surprised how the kids can quickly fall in love with Thai dishes.

There's a lot more dishes in their kitchen that I'm sure are all worth trying, and here's hoping I could drop by again to try the others. Thank you Thai Bistro for a fabulous dining experience.

Thank you to the owner, Miss Cecille, and the Manager, Mr. Ruben. We will definitely recommend Thai Bistro to our friends and relatives.

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