so many times i thought i should be posting about my love affair with this little, recently expanded Thai joint just across the park from Elmhurst Hospital, which we were surprised to find had made it into the Voice best of. I'm not sure how many hounders made it over there, but if you went, liked it and are considering going back, you may want to watch your step.
When it was just a tiny storefront with about 10 seats, I couldn't believe how great it was; awesome fried pork appetizer (hard to find done well), crispy papaya salad that was served blisteringly spicy upon request, and one of the richest, most beautiful massaman curries ever were three things that took me there far too often.
However, a couple of things happened since. First, the restaurant closed for expansion, and when it did, I was informed by one of the managers that the chef left, since she needed to find a job while they closed for remodeling. Now, I get to play the "will it or won't it be good" game each time I visit, something that quickly drives me away. They've hired a new server, a young guy, friendly enough, but spends a lot of time chatting with his friends who come in, versus making sure the cooks actually make what we ordered.
After going here once a week for months, i'm totally depressed about the state of affairs. The sloppiness is absolutely appalling - one day Tom Yum is clear, beautiful and tasty, the next we're served what is essentially beef bouillion, with sweet onions and some shrimp thrown in.
Portions, already modest, are shrinking, while the noodle dishes are shaping up to be a total crapshoot. For a while, we were able to go here and forget all about that little place over on 69th Street - the added incentive was lower prices, which remain thus, thankfully - now i'm ready to run back into the loving arms of mother sripraphai, even if eating there can be rather expensive (by queens standards, but still).
i'd be interested to hear what other people think about Mom Mam, and if i'm just hitting it at the wrong times (77-05 Woodside Avenue, 718-672-5266). I don't want this restaurant to collapse into mediocrity, but i think they've already passed the point of no return.