Khao San Road – Toronto
If I needed to pick my favourite restaurant in Toronto for 2014, Khao San Road (Adelaide and Peter) would definitely be the one! The food is amazing, the vibe is so much fun, the restaurant as a whole is unpretentious (a rarity in our foodie town) and did I mention that the food rocks?! I have now been a few times and I’m trying my hardest to get any/all of my friends to go there. Each time was more exciting than the last as I keep discovering flavours I had never tasted before and immediately fall in love with (galang-galang for example).
The room is quite basic, lots of crammed seating and a giant bar in the middle of it all. The decor and ambiance are very much in line with every other hipster restaurant on Ossington (where it should be located): industrial finishing on all the furniture, chalkboard walls featuring the specials, extremely loud music for a restaurant and a pretty unpretentious vibe from the staff. You’re always guaranteed to be waiting in line for at least 10-15 minutes so be prepared and definitely wait, it’s totally worth it!
I can wholeheartedly recommend going for anything and EVERYTHING on the menu. As appetizers, my favourite so far has been the deep fried garlic tofu. It’s crunchy on the outside and super soft on the inside making it the perfect dipping morsel for an amazing garlic hot sauce. As a main, the Khao Soi has left quite an impression on me. Golden curry filled with huge chunks of whatever protein you choose (I generally do chicken) and veggies, topped by a plethora of crispy egg noodles, scallions, coriander and the optional pickled veggies. Just as a warning, this is a place where you can never be brave with the level of spicy you take your food. The “Thai Spicy” option comes with a talking to from your server and anything spicier than that is just pure taste bud suicide. Be proud that even mild food gives you the sweats and enjoy a meal without fearing what will happen once everything is digested. In terms of pricing, it’s definitely not as cheap as run of the mill Thai restos but definitely not expensive either. Apps vary from 10-15$ for fairly large portions while mains hover around the 15-20$ mark depending on the protein you choose.
In closing, I’d like to keep it very simple… if you’re thinking of going to Khao San Road for a meal, please call me, I wouldn’t want to miss any opportunity to eat there again.