The bottom line: I will be very tempted to make a detour here every time I am headed home from work!
I’d like to premise this review by saying that my foray into Thai cuisine is by no means as extensive as that of the other half of Foodies Have Fun.. aka Ana. However, I do have a deep appreciation for food (you probably wouldn’t have guessed, right? haha) and hence why I decided to venture out more into other Asian dishes besides just sushi. Honestly, it’s not that I have abstained from this cuisine but I think that things have worked themselves out where I found myself reviewing other type dishes and not this one. I have had Thai food in about 4 or so occasions but the places I had visited served more Asian fusion so I don’t think that they necessarily can count that much!
Lucky for me I was able to start breaking this streak went I went to Thai Orchid for Ana’s good bye dinner during her last day in Charlotte (she will still be blogging via our “Around The World” section. Yay!!). I was glad I went because my visit to this restaurant was great! Despite the fact that I had stuffed myself with a half bag of “Chip’ins” while driving to this place (don’t judge me…I was starving. And yes I knew I was about to have dinner) the smell radiating from the restaurant was enough to make me forget all of what I had eaten already.
While at Thai Orchid I decided that it was time for me to order for the very first time some Pad Thai (shocker, I know!). The dish comes with the option of chicken and shrimp or vegetarian. I of course decided to do the chicken and shrimp. I mean might as well while I am there! The dish is served with noodles, sauteed shrimp and chicken, eggs, bean sprouts, green onion, and ground peanuts. I must tell you that I enjoyed it so much! However, do expect the dish to be a little sweet, as this was something that surprised me. At times it did feel like it was too sweet for my liking but I am not sure if this is how this restaurant prepares their Pad Thai or if it’s done this way pretty much across the board (finding this out will be my next mission!). The shrimp was great since it was not overcooked to the point where it becomes chewy and loses its flavor. The chicken was equally as good also. Something else that I did like is that there wasn’t that much ground peanuts where it would overwhelm the flavors of the dish. After having this I can see why the Pad Thai is one of the most famous dishes of Thailand…yum!!
Pictured you will also see the other dishes that my friends had during this dinner. I had a piece of the fresh rolls and they were good. I wasn’t sure what type of meat was inside but I would like to think that it was pork. A friend had the Pad See Ew which is pan fried rice noodle with egg, broccoli, and choice of meat. She said it was tasty and enjoyed her dish a lot. I have had this dish at another local Thai restaurant and to me it felt like it was sweet as well but less than the Pad Thai. Finally Ana had the Pad Phed which was chicken stir fried with onions, bamboo shots, oyster sauce, mushrooms, in coconut cream and curry paste. She wanted me to relay that she liked her dish but that her only complain was that the chicken was cut really small (as you can see in the picture).
Overall I really liked my visit to Thai Orchid. The restaurant is tucked away in the Strawberry Hill complex and it’s such a cute little place. Its decor features staple Thai attire and pictures as well as different publications that they have appeared on. It seems to be a very family oriented dinner spot as well as somewhere you can go on a date or out with friends. And believe me, it will be very very tempting for me to drive by this place on my way home now that I know it exists and not pick up something to go. Hmmm we shall see how long my will power will last!