critical1 | Nov 2, 200312:18 PM     19

Last night, we were in the mood for some Isaan-style food. Of course, the obvious choice would have been our standby favorite, Siam Noodle. I've probably eaten there like 50+ times during the 5 years I've been in Chicago. But we were in the mood for something new. I would like to thank the board for leading me to Spoon Thai. After years of sticking to my safe Thai choices....Siam Noodle, Thai Super Chef, and Siam House....I decided to check out a chowhound favorite.

Amongst my Thai friends, we don't really talk about some of the faves here. I haven’t heard too much about Spoon. I must of drove pass it a 1000 times, and never once did I have the urge to give it a try.

Wow, guys, thanks a lot-- for adding another Thai option in my choice portfolio.

My gf and I had the tod mun, meang kum, tom yum goong, isaan sausage, yum talay, nam tok beef, larb duck. Our table was full, and at the end of the evening, we rolled out of there satisfied.

Tod mum -- very, very good. It was nicely sized and not too oily. Perfectly flavored.

Meang Kum -- when I saw this on the menu...I almost couldn't order it fast enough. This is one of my favorite snacks growing up. Reminds me of my childhood. The snack originally should have been served with a leaf called bai chapo. Here, it is served on a lettuce leaf, which I believe doesn't possess enough taste to complement the dish. The bai chapo has a stronger taste that complements the other ingredients perfectly. Minor details…still a might tasty dish.

Tom Yum Goong – great tom yum, here. No wimpy amerithai here. Flavored perfectly, almost like home.

Nam Tok Nua (Beef)-- Another very good dish. Quite authentic. Nicely marinated with excellent flavor.

Yum Talay (seafood)-- The seafood wasn’t the freshest – from the mussels to the squid. Too bad, because it would’ve been excellent. I wouldn’t order it again.

Larb Ped (duck) – Really, really good. Of the three yum dishes, this was my favorite.

Isaan sausage-- The flavor is a bit too odd for me. I can’t locate what was wrong with it, but it seemed a bit medicine-y. I love this dish at Siam Noodle.

Bottomline: Authentic and very good food. Great, friendly service. Simple, clean and beautiful place. I’m happy as heck that you guys lead me here and I will be returning here real soon.

What were your favorite dishes? Anything that stands out that I should try next time?

I’ll go back and do a little less Isaan next time. Speaking of Isaan…what we lack here in Chicago is a street market like Gai Yang (Roasted Chicken). I had Gai Yang at Siam Rice on Wells the other day, and it was a disappointing. The chicken pieces were small, a bit dry, and the flavor was lacking. I had Gai Yang at Yum Thai several years back, and it was pretty decent, but not quite Bangkok.

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