Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Heat Is On at Thai Spice

Thai Spice
15455 Jeffery Rd.
Irvine, CA 92618

My friend David had a great plan to take us out for Indonesian food on a recent Sunday. What he did not tell us was the restaurant was all the way up in West Covina. Not wanting to drive an hour each way, I asked him for another one of his favorite joints in this area code. After some deliberation he came up with Thai Spice.

I have just been introduced to Thai food this year. This will be our third Thai restaurant review, and I can say that I have really liked it so far. The spice has been good, lots of vegetables and meats, so it appears to be healthier, so I can eat more. Let's hope this Thai place can keep things rolling.

We arrived at Thai Spice at six on a Sunday night. The restaurant is located in a sleepy little strip mall. I say it was sleepy, except for of course Thai Spice. Throughout our visit, they were kept busy by the customers flooding the place. This is a fast food style Thai place. Ordering is done at the counter and brought to your table. After perusing the large menu, this is what we came up with.

My good friend, David opted to try the Chicken Fried Rice. He felt that this had plenty of chicken, and was cooked well. He also liked that the plate was served steaming hot and fresh. I did not get to try this dish because he slurped this up faster than I have ever seen anyone eat. Next time I will have to be quicker on the draw.

Katie went with her old standby, the Shrimp Pad Thai. According to the menu here, this is their most popular dish. Rice noodles, shrimp, green onions, bean sprouts, spices and ground peanuts combined to make this dish that Katie called, "flavorful". She ordered this with mild spice, but it still popped with flavor. She felt they were very generous with the amount of shrimp on this, and like David's plate, this came out scalding hot.

Scalding hot will not even begin to describe my Beef Curry. It was more like volcanic hot. First, the temperature of this was close to boiling. I ordered this green curry beef spicy. I will not make that mistake again. I can usually handle spicy food, but this really made me sweat. The first few bites were good, then the heat started to hit me. My tongue was numbed instantly. The flavor of this was good for the first few bites, then it all went dark for my taste buds. I tried finishing this, and making it look like the heat was not getting to me. I do not think I fooled anyone.

Not only did I have the beef curry, but I ordered the Garlic Shrimp Plate as well. This time I was smart and ordered it with medium spice, which was just the right amount of spice for me. The shrimp was served with garlic sauce, green and white onions, carrots and cabbage. I was very happy with the amount of shrimp here, and the flavor was pretty good. The veggies were fresh and crisp. All of the plate dishes come with rice and salad. Both of these were just average.

Just in case we did not have enough food, we also had the Chicken Fried Wontons above. These were average wontons, but what made these better was the Thai honey sauce. It really added another dimension here. Not overly sweet, and they complimented the wontons greatly.

Another pleasant surprise was the Thai Iced Tea. This orange colored tea had a smooth, sweet flavor, which would have gone well with my very spicy beef curry dish. Unfortunately, David kept this drink all to himself.  He acted like he did not see me sweating bullets, but I think he took some pleasure in seeing me suffer a little bit. Thanks a lot big guy.

At the end of the night I came out of Thai Spice really liking it. All of the food was fresh, it came out hot, and the flavor was really popping. The prices, as you would expect from a fast food place, were very reasonable. Nothing on the menu is over $10. The menu is also very broad, so there are lots of items to choose from. When we are back in the area we would definitely eat here again.

So out of five monsoons, (because these wet weather systems dominate Thailand, and I could have used a monsoon to put out the fire in my mouth), five being best to zero being worst, Thai Spice gets 3 monsoons.

For more information on Thai Spice, click here:

Thai Spice on Urbanspoon

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