So perhaps it started when the waitress told us not to order the shrimp dumplings because they were old and would just be microwaved. Or maybe it got more obvious when, upon serving our appetizers, she took off the coffee mugs that were sitting on our tables and placed their saucers in front of us as our plates. But it definitely got surreal when she said they didn't serve beer, but they did. They didn't, but the owner (?) came out with some beer and said he'd sell it to us, if we wanted, but they really didn't sell it.
T. and I thought we'd try Desiree restaurant for a quick dinner, reading about it somewhere (here, I think) that it had become a thai diner. It's on the corner of Lincoln and Oakton in Skokie. Picture a large, straight-from-the-60's diner serving diner-ish food, focusing on breakfast it seems, but also serving Pad See Ewe, etc.
We were very excited - what a funky combination!
I was happy to see "Traditional thai pancake" on the specials and anticipated scallions and crispy savories. Then I noticed it mentioned that it was covered with condensed milk and cocoa. Is this traditional? Hmm. Things just went downhill from there, food-wise, though the service was pleasant.
I begged for thai heat, and got none. I asked for pepper condiments, and got an unclean-ish condiment thingy less than 1/2 full. Hmm again.
Spring rolls: bland, and in a sauce that was more or less brown sugar and water. Blech.
Curry: fared better here, but flat flavors, no heat, oily in a way that was offputtingly mouth-coating. Nice eggplant and fresh green beans, though.
Pad See Ewe: noodles of chewed bubble gum consistency, none of that nice crispiness to the edges. Fresh veggies, but flavorless sauce. And way too sweet.
So, we gave up on this and went to Village Creamery for dessert for the first time. I immediately hesitated when I saw the brightly colored ice creams. I have a thing for artificial colors and hate the subtle, bitter aftertastes. I tried their pistachio, and could taste the green, so I passed. But I loved their lychee and also their coconut. The lychee was a great treat - really captured the flavor of the fruit w/o overwhelming it in butterfat. Both were uncolored, as well. I'd recommend these two flavors, at least, whole-heartedly.