Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Thai No. 1 - Ashfield

I was so happy when I finally got into Year 12, because that meant we were allowed to go out of school grounds to buy lunch! Most of the time we would go to the local chicken shop for some of the best chips and gravy in the world, maybe a piece of fried chicken, a viet pork roll or even some KFC. But every now and then, for a treat, we'll go to Thai No. 1 for a Thai fried rice. But since it was always cooked fresh to order, we spent most of our lunchtime waiting for the food and then scoffing down the searingly hot fried rice.

Since high school, I have rarely ever visited Thai No. 1 again. I was seriously craving Thai food in Ashfield one night and decided to go back, hoping the food was still the same.

The restaurant is small and simple in layout. You order and pay at the counter before they bring the food out to you. There are jugs of water and glasses you help yourself to, something I don't mind especially if it means cheaper food!

Speaking of food......

Marinated BBQ Chicken

I love the Thai marinated bbq meats. Thai No. 1's version tastes similar to a satay/curry rub on the meat. Moist, suculent and absolutely delicious! Especially if you dip it in the sweet chilli dressing.

Massaman Beef Curry

Massaman Beef is beautiful when done right. But there's been quite a few places I've been to that serves hunks of dry stringy beef thrown into a hastily made sauce. Thai No.1's version is nothing like that. Moist tender chunks of beef that you can break apart and mix into the sauce. Tender chunks of potatoes and a scattering of peanuts makes this a beautiful dish. I just wish there was more potatoes!

Chicken Cashew Nuts

My absolute favourite stir fry Thai dish. I always ask for extra sauce to ladel across my rice. They do a pretty good version of this! But I think my favourite will still have to Sumalee's version! hehe

Thai No 1
12 Charlotte Street
(Ph) 02 9797 7900

Sunday, October 11, 2009

SIFF - Let's do lunch at Aria

I've been a hectic 2 months. Leading up to my holiday I was forever busy packing, researching, booking and generally wrapping up work. Then I was away for a month, coming back completely exhausted to find my relos were visiting. This means I need to play host and take them around. Not the easiest thing when completely jetlagged. Atleast I knew most of this was going to happen and emailed a friend before I went on leave.

"I know you always organise those Lets do Lunch things. As long as I am back in the country, count me in for whatever lunch you organise!!!"

This meant I had Aria booked for the very first Friday I was back!

Amuse bouche - Vichyssoise

This is the first time I've tried a Vichyssoise (Which is basically a cold potato and leek soup). Being rainy and miserable day, I was questioning the idea of serving a cold soup as a starter. But you know what? I was gorgeous! Definitely something I'm going to try again once the weather warms up.

Brown Brother's Vermentine

Roasted fillet of Barramundi with fennel and calamari risotto

Last year they also had a roasted Barramundi but with a pea risotto. But Aria never disappoints. The skin was crispy and the fish was perfectly moist. The calamari was tender, but didn't really add any flavour to the overall dish. Seems like they were cooked seperately rather than with the risotto, so it didn't impart any flavour to the dish.

Pumpkin, asparagus, golden beetroot and fetta salad

A lovely balanced salad to add a bit of freshness to the meal. But nothing, and I mean NOTHING, compares to Aria's Truffled Potato Mash:

Truffled Potato Mash

Oh. My. Lord. Any potato lovers out there, get your butt to Aria NOW. The one thing I remembered from eating at Aria is their mash. How I would've loved to take this bowl, plonk my butt down on a couch and dig into it with a spoon. Luckily everyone else loves the Aria mash so we ordered another bowl to share! hehe

Dessert menu

Poached strawberries with panacotta and shortbread

The dessert menu was simply too tempting. Despite stuffing my face with mash, I opted for the poached strawberries with panacotta and shortbread. My favourites were the 2 little baby meringue/marshmallow thingies that had been lightly torched. I love the soft and chewy texture.

Mango cheesecake with ginger crumble, lime jelly and roasted pineapple sorbet

Apparently also very good!

ARIA Restaurant
1 Macquarie Street
East Circular Quay
Sydney 2000


(Ph) 02 9252 2555