So to get updated again, last last Wednesday (the wedding week) we went out to meet one of hubby's best friends from high school. Mostly to get her acquainted with her "date" for the wedding, who is hubby's best man.
The venue we chose was Room Service, a popular Thai restaurant located on 9th avenue. I read some yelp reviews and perused their menu before coming, and was impressed by their elaborate turn-of-the-century decor.
You get the feeling right off the bat with the Victorian-style lettering on the awning and the nice park chair outside. (We actually didn't know they were part of the restaurant until we saw people dining on our way out. I just thought it was kind of random how there was a park chair on the sidewalk).
I saw this in the pictures online, but it was even better in person. Their signature crystal chandelier felt a bit out of place for a Thai restaurant, but it was classy enough to pull through.
Our friends had already arrived and were waiting for us by the bar. We grabbed a table for four at the back. It was pretty crowded I must say between the tables, as I had to squeeze (really hard too!) between a small space to get to my seat at the booth.
I ordered a Thai iced tea, and so did hubby's best man. Hubby got his usual gingerale, and his friend got an alcoholic beverage whose name I did not remember. My tea was pretty well balanced with smooth cream and dark tea. Unfortunately I drank too much coffee that day to fully appreciate its taste.
I had read on Yelp that their sesame covered tofu and the corn spring rolls were pretty good. So we ordered that for starters.
I was kind of disappointed by the crispy tofu however. Although the first bite is an awesome integration of sesame seeds and tofu, it tasted kind of bland after a while, almost like chewing on a piece of crunchy fried rubber. We probably should have gotten the pan steamed mussels with Thai herbs or the Tofu Tod (crispy tofu with crushed peanuts in chili sauce) instead.
For the entree I ordered the Chu-Chee salmon with thai herbs, butter and spices in a mild chu-chee chili paste with asparagus and kaffir lime leaves.
Our dish came out pretty fast. But during the wait it was hard to carry out a conversation even with the person sitting next to me, because they play some really loud club music.
The salmon was quite succulent, with the meat was cooked to medium well, just the way I wanted. You can't really taste the chili sauce because it was like the menu said, pretty mild. The asparagus was pretty tender too, though I'm not a big fan of it.
I'm not sure which dish hubby's best man got, but it was something to do with chicken. The pictures turned out pretty dark because I didn't want to embarrass everyone with flash.
Hubby's friend ordered a glass noodle with chicken. It was funny because she forgot what they were called and had to describe it to the waiter like "you know, those thin see-through noodles".
Hubby got a pad thai with vegetarian duck with drunken noodles. He didn't really like it because it tasted a little too sour for his liking, but I found it pretty good.
The rice was decent. Although I had no curry to use it for, I ate most of my mound because after a while the salmon gets a little sickening (I gave half of mine to hubby hehe).
Cheesecake with lychee ginger sauce
It was a good thing that hubby's friend is huge on desserts, because I was a little too stuffed to ask for some. We actually ended up ordering 3 out of 5 of their dessert menu - the keylime pie, lychee ginger cheesecake and thai pumpkin flan.
The cheesecake was uber rich and satisfying. The ginger added an extra kick to dampen the sweetness with a bit of fireyness. The lychees were just cute.
I really, really liked the key lime pie. Funny because I've never put much thought to it before, but boy this was so refreshing. At first bite I didn't even know what hit me, other than a cool rush of tranquility. Okay, maybe not that. It was so cool and refreshing that believe me, you will not stop until it's done. (Somehow, we managed to share these three desserts well into the late of the night).
And the flan was amazing. It came in a blue china porcelain bowl, with a few drizzles of chocolate by the side in a zen-like circle. It was pretty hot at first, so my first bite was a little bit of burning sensation. But afterwards, I was soothed by the mildness of the pumpkin, which was actually kind of salty compared to the outside skin, which provided a nice contrast of flavors. Everyone was impressed by this dish.
I think next time I have to try their signature pad thai, which comes enclosed in an egg omelette (yumm...noodles + eggs), topped with an orchid flower decoration (yummm...orchid flower). Some of their other noodle entrees look pretty good too, and are relatively cheap compared to other restaurants on the block.
Unfortunately, we didn't have much time to walk around Times Square to walk it all off. But we did chat until the parties around us all left and were replaced by newcomers. I think hubby's friend and best man had a good time, which is good because the next meal they will sitting together will be even longer =).
**** (4/5 stars)