After 2 months of French cuisine, Mme L. and I had a craving for Thai food, donc, I did a search on CH and found a recommendation of Sukothai near Pl. de l’Italie. This was not just an ordinary old recommendation but a ringing endorsement by my one of my 2 CH culinary heroes, Souphie ( the other being the encyclopedic Ptitpois). That clinched it, I immediately called for reservations the next day.
When we arrived, a few negative vibrations emanated; the room was less than ½ full, there were zero diners with a discernable trace of Asian ancestry, the tables were set with knives and forks (there were also those industrial, break apart chop sticks) and the menu was the size of the Manhattan phone book with a whole section in the back of Chinese food, not necessarily a bad thing. Aware of Souphie’s culinary credentials, I refused to lose hope. Mme L.’s entrée was a rather good salade de boeuf which was wonderfully spicy, although this was not mentioned on the menu. My entrée was a passable salade de gambas à la citronelle although the shrimp were less than firm. About here things started deteriorating; Mme’s main course was shrimp in coconut milk, a generous serving but the shrimp had the limp, tastelessness I associate with too long thawed out frozen product. I crave spiciness and thus had ordered sautéed pork, which the menu stated as “epicé”…wrong, wrong, wrong… this was milder than a Quaker wedding and the thin strips of meat were totally indistinguishable in taste or texture from chicken. Normally about here I would have politely feigned satiety and requested the check, but the wife, who I always obey, loves banana beignets. They appeared looking about as good as these things can look, but after one bite she noticed that the beignets had been unmistakenly fried in oil overly redolent of fried meat. My order was to have been fresh mango but the nice waiter informed us that they were not available and suggested fresh pineapple instead. This was nicely presented and since we were there last week, it may now be ripe, but at the time it was served, it was not.
What conclusions can I draw? Perhaps this Sukothai on Rue Guerin was not the same one; maybe it has been a while since Souphie has been there; perhaps this was a diversion from normal and was just a bad day, which I know can often happen. Anyway, this was our experience last Thursday, and I will await some recent CH endorsements before going back.
Below is a photo of the "Quaker Pork"