Friday, 18 April 2008

prasit's northside thai

395 Crown St
Surry Hills NSW 2010
Phone (02) 9332 1792

What this place lacks in terms of space and interior decoration is more than made up for by the quality of the food and friendly service on offer. The take-away arm of the successful Prasit's Northside Thai in North Sydney, this south-of-the-bridge counterpart retains much of the existing menu minus a few premium seafood dishes.

Battle the legions of locals coming in for take-away and grab a table upstairs if you're lucky, or if you don't mind a little hustle and bustle, the front room bar stools and tall tables will do just fine for two people.

Now, to business. The litmus test of any Thai restaurant has to be it's fishcakes - often looking like they were sliced from a perfectly cylindrical roll or could possibly be mistaken as a sponge, these can be pretty shocking. It is nice to see that they are made fresh here; are airy, spiced, irregular in shape and unmistakably the real deal.

The fried tofu served with tamarind sauce was similarly enjoyable, with a crunchy exterior, a soft, smooth interior and the tamarind sauce and crushed peanut garnish complemented well.

banana flower salad

The Banana Flower Salad followed; chicken poached in coconut milk, served with a tangy, richly flavoured salad of sliced banana flowers, lemongrass, coriander, coconut, peanuts and chilli jam.

When it comes to the tenants of asian cooking, the aim is to incorporate sweet, sour, spicy and salty to make a perfectly balanced dish. If that's the qualifier, then this dish is a textbook example. The chicken is tender (although I think an old shoe might also get the same treatment if it was poached in coconut milk) and the creaminess of the coconut milk complimented the tangy freshness of the salad.

The Massamum Beef Curry was a little like the headliner playing after an amazing support band.. a bit of a hard act to follow. A staple like this should have been better than it was - classic Massamum should be made with chunks of tender, pressure cooked beef that should melt in your mouth. The curry was good (if a little lacking in excitement) and the potatoes were perfectly cooked however I'd leave this one out next time. Also, if you're a puritan, this dish should only be served with beef (there are lamb and chicken options available here).

If you're a fan of sweets, leave room for the Sticky Black Rice with Coconut Milk. The rice is creamy sweet and the coconut milk is just salty enough for you to appreciate the rice without it being to cloying. And "Waiter, there are lychees in my rice." (Thats a good thing.) Suffice to say, it was pretty impressive.

Prasit's is a little more expensive than other Thai take away joints but what you pay a few extra dollars for is authenicity, quality ingredients and really well put together dishes.



de Groots said...
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nav said...

this place is fabo, best green curry and pad thai in sydney i vote.