Restaurants & Bars 3

Chowlunch at Pilin: Report

Bob W. | Oct 2, 2003 02:03 PM

Five of us just had a very nice lunch at Pilin in Falls Church. The general consensus seemed to be that everyone was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the food and the gentle prices.

We had:

Appetizers: Larb and yum talay. Both very good. People were particularly impressed with the yum talay, which consists of shrimp, scallops, mussels, and squid in "Chef's Sharp Taste Seasoning." Upon reflection, I think I've seen bigger piles of larb at other local Thai joints, but that's a minor quibble.

Noodles: Pad thai w/ chicken. The old standby. Some thought it a bit sweet, but that's Northern Virginia pad thai. I've definitely had sweeter. Points awarded for noodles not being cooked to gumminess. A point taken away for no fresh lime to squeeze (although we probably could have asked for some, eh?).

Entrees: Spicy crispy catfish was one of the big winners. Meaty chunks of fish in a very nice batter served in a curry basil sauce -- great for spooning over rice. Duck red curry: another big winner. Lean pieces of duck with tomato, pineapple, and (a nice surprise) green grapes in another delicious curry sauce.

Gra tiem pik tai (beef sauteed with ground garlic and ground pepper): perfectly acceptable, but overshadowed by the two curries. Pad num mon hoi (pork sauteed with oyster sauce and broccoli): this looked a lot like the beef dish, and was the weakest of the bunch. Kinda boring.

Definitely worthy of a return visit.

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