Several years ago my travels landed me in Phuket, a tiny island off the coast of Thailand. The journey and jet-lag were brutal, but the food more than made up for the 22-hour flight. In true foodie style, I had planned out my meals ahead of time. Stop number one, Duck Spicy, a family-style, open-air restaurant on a busy corner, a couple of blocks from the beach. This spot was known for serving some of the tastiest Thai food in the area and once I had eaten there, none of the other restaurants on my list stood a chance. I ended up eating most of my remaining meals at Duck Spicy, perched at a tiny table listening to the blaring music from passing tuk tuks.
In the years since that trip, I have searched for a local Thai restaurant that could match the variety, richness, and depth of flavor of Duck Spicy. With an optimistic mind and hungry belly, I looked
over the take-out menu of the recently opened Thai Dishes Restaurant in Briarcliff. Being that “curry”, “take-out” and “leftovers” are some of the most popular words in my house, I knew this meal would be an all-round hit. The menu is extensive, featuring a variety of curry and noodle choices, along with a somewhat overwhelming selection of delicious-sounding meat, seafood and vegetarian/vegan dishes. Having a little trouble deciding, I ended up placing a generous order knowing that what didn’t get eaten for dinner would make for a good lunch the next day.
My order was ready within about twenty minutes. I lugged my stuffed take-out bag home and laid my dishes out on the counter. As I opened them and the smells of curry, coconut, and lime wafted through the house, my family magically appeared.
We started off our meal with an assortment of vegetable and pork dumplings as well as curry puffs. All were clearly handmade and came with their own unique dipping sauces. All three items were tasty and my daughter gave the vegetable dumplings an immediate two thumbs up.
We moved on to the yellow curry with chicken – chunks of chicken, potatoes, onions, carrots and green beans floating in a pool of delicious, spicy, and slightly sweet coconut curry sauce that was worth ladling generously over rice.
Finally, we dug into the dishes I had been eyeing since I had spotted them on the menu, drunken noodles and duck choo chee. The noodles were tender with just the right amount of chewiness. Nestled among them were bright, fresh vegetables and crispy chunks of tofu. We kept going back for “just one more bite.”
The duck choo chee ended up being my favorite of all of the dishes. Slices of crispy duck are served over Chinese broccoli and bell peppers, in a warm and perfectly spicy choo chee sauce that I would have happily drank from a mug.
With a full and satisfied belly, I started clearing up the empty take out containers from the counter and sadly realized that there wouldn’t be leftovers for lunch tomorrow.
In full disclosure, I have ordered from Thai Dishes three other times this month. Seems like my quest for a local Thai spot has finally come to an end.
Eat In or Take-Out
Open for Lunch & Dinner Tues-Sun
BYOB – $10 Corkage Fee for Wine
1924 Pleasantville Road