I love Sripraphai, but as a Jersey resident and tired commuter to Noho, I don't get a chance to get out to Woodside too often.
I'm stunned and impressed by their recent renovation though -- the place has actual ambience now! Not that this is even 10% as important as the food, but now that it looks AND tastes fabulous, I'm going to risk introducing some slightly less adventurous friends to Sripraphai -- if all seven or eight of us can fit into the place on a Saturday. Is lunchtime less crowded on Saturdays than dinnertime? If we were to risk dinner, we'd have to squeeze in earlier than 6:30 or so to avoid a lengthy wait, yes?
When I was there a month ago, the back patio dining area looked like it was in a major state of construction disarray -- are they any closer to finishing it? I *loved* that outdoor garden dining area in the old days. It'll be even better if it's now twice the size. And on Sat. nights, the place will accomodate waaaaay more folks.
If we risked Sat. dinnertime at Sri and then found a super-long line in front of us, is Zabb less crowded? I've been meaning to try Zabb -- I've never had Isaan (northeastern Thai) cuisine before, although I don't expect to be quite as good as Sripraphai, because what is?
I also wish to drag an entirely different crowd out there on a different day, probably a Tuesday or Thursday after work... are Thursdays really crowded at around 7?
Also, thanks to everyone who contributed to the "what if I can't eat spicy food" discussion about Sri, way down below... gives me some ideas for what to order for the one or two least spice-tolerant of my friends. These people have probably never eaten Thai food that's not heavily Americanized or Chinese-like, so Sripraphai may or may not be a PLEASANT shock to them.