Daily Archives: January 9, 2006

‘Thai’ in Southern Florida

I must say that’s been far too long since I wrote my last post back in November of last year and that the last month and a half was pretty hectic, but, I did check thai-blogs frequently to see what’s new. I got back on the 6th January 2006 from a three-week holiday in sunny Miami, FL., and honestly I would’ve liked to stay there once I got outside of Heathrow to absolute cold!

I didn’t see one single ugly cloud for three weeks, only clear blue skies and lots of sunshine and sand. And this reminded me a lot about Thailand; Florida seems to have no winter much like Phuket really. Just a lot of rain when the season calls for it. While my family was lounging a bit on the beach, even some of the smells and palm trees made me think “Hey, this is sort of like Patong Beach”. Actually, while I was down there, I made sure that I noticed Thai things but who can miss the many Thai restaurants, diners and eaterys around anyway?

We spent the beach time most often at Fort Lauderdale and there just so happens to be a Thai restaurant funnily enough called ‘Thai on the Beach’ there.

‘Thai on the Beach’ restaurant located on Fort Lauderdale Beach, FL

This restaurant is located on top of a busy pizza diner so you have to climb these wonky stairs. I was taking careful steps because it feels like it will collapse if you don’t move up fast enough. And don’t be distracted by the food menu right outside the door when you get up there. There’s also a deadly step you gotta watch out for instead! My mom and I went to this restaurant when we came earlier in March. The same hostess lady was still there and I think she remembered us from last time.

Inside the ‘Thai on the Beach’ restaurant

Inside its quite comfy. You have a nice view of the beach from up there in an A/C environment! The food we did order from this place was mostly Pad Thai to take out. For one dish it costs about $7.95. I don’t think we ordered anything other than that from this restaurant so I wouldn’t be able to give my two cents on the rest of the menu. We were also asking about ‘gluay diew’ or ‘fried bananas’ and what they are like here. I’ll explain this later.

‘Thai To Go’ Take-Out Eatery

If you drove north along SR A1A (N. Ocean Blvd) on Ft. Lauderdale Beach, eventually you’ll come across another Thai eatery called ‘Thai To Go’ which is a take-out. The first ‘Thai Take-Out’ I’ve seen that doesn’t have a restaurant in the back. The Pad Thai here tasted much better compared to TOTB restaurant although just a 1/4 smaller perhaps than theirs. The ‘Thai To Go’ has adds a spicy flavor from mild, medium to hot whereas TOTB was more or less plainer and didn’t have any spices. It was also a bit cheaper here at $6.80. We ordered Tom Kha Gai and Panaeng from here too and these also significantly better.

‘Talad Thai’ – Thai and Oriental Store

Next door is also a small Thai convenience store on the right side. This is apparently quite new, you’ll notice if you step inside. Something different that I noticed which the Thai convenience stores in London didn’t have was ready-made frozen desserts such as ‘ruer mitr’ or ‘khao niew ma muang’ that you can just heat up for 1-2 minutes in the microwave. I bought a few packs of ‘ruer mitr’ and they taste just as fresh so I’d recommend those.

There was a restaurant called ‘Bangkok House’ situated on 366 North Congress Avenue in Boynton Beach where my family dined on two occasions. The first time, it was very quiet and there was perhaps only two other sets of customers dining inside. It was pretty dim inside but they had decorated twinky lights up and Thai Pop Music playing in the background (some songs I actually knew from ethaimusic 😉 ) The service was good which was actually done more or less by Thai students around my age. So, we ordered some dishes of Pad Thai, Panaeng, Tom Kha Gai, etc. The food contents and presentation was a little unusual. They added big veggies like carrots for example. It turns out that the Thai food that was prepared was made to suit ‘farang tastes’ which was just the opposite of what we thought we ordered. I don’t know how different or similar other Thai restaurants across the country are but if you intend to eat authentic Thai, make sure you TELL them you want authentic Thai food! Otherwise, you’ll get Panaeng with carrots and broccoli. Besides that, the dish still tasted good

‘Bangkok House’ Restaurant in Boynton Beach, FL

The second time we went there was on Christmas day. That time there were a lot more people there. My mom had a good chat with the waiter the first time so he was already familiar with us. While we ordered the same thing, I decided that I wanted to try their ‘Fried Bananas’ but to go. When it came, I was eager to see if it’s the authentic ‘Kluay Tod’ to find this

‘Fried Bananas’ — sort of

So I would recommend to skip Fried Bananas altogether because even when we inquired at the ‘Thai on the Beach’ restaurant, they also made it like this too. The reason for this is apparently because it takes longer to make authentic ‘Kluay Tod’ like in Thailand and that it is pricey to import the Thai style bananas for this dish.

A Thai/Japanese combined restaurant inside Aventura Mall

What I also noticed while traveling around Southern Florida is the many Thai/Japanese restaurants everywhere. Like you can’t have one without the other. I haven’t tried one of those so I am not sure how it works inside. Whether it is Thai or Japanese owned and who is also preparing the other cuisine. I think next time I would like to go into one of these though because I like both foods. This one I believe is more Thai because I had a peek inside.

Old Patong Early 80’s: Eden Encountered

These photos show all but the extreme northern end of the cape of Patong Bay. This is how things looked in 79…notice, there are very few building that show up thru the coconut groves along the beach. Click here for a bigger picture.

Old Patong in the early 80’s was little more than a sleeply coconut grove on the most perfect horseshoe shaped bay on earth!

The paved road then ended just west of little Kathu town, the big hills climbing and falling towards the blue Anadaman Sea.

The only electricity were the few generators at the even few bungalow compounds and the big Patong Beach Hotel, the only place on Patong Beach with airconditioning, hot water and screens on the windows to block the mozzies.

The rumor had it then that there was a law which no structure could be built higher than a Coconut tree!