Just went (Mar 07) to Jasmin Thai (corner of Spring Creek and Custer, in Plano), and I was really disappointed.
-The service was really nice, friendly & quick.
-The food was bad. We ordered Satay and Fishcakes as appetizers. The Satay was mediocre at best. The Fishcake was almost burned, and the sauce was too sweet.
-The main course was ever worse. I am a huge fan of Asian food, but that was some version of Americanized Thai food that was too sweet and too heavy on the sauce. The only thing missing was a ketchup bottle.
-The ambience was below average, well below.
-This has nothing to do with the food, so it does not really belong in a reply in chowhound, but the other people eating there (lunch, Saturday) seemed to have come straight from the twilight zone. I would overlook that, if the food was excellent, but it wasn’t.
If you are looking for some of the best authentic Thai food in Dallas, you have to try Tamarind Thai. This place is owned by the same guy who owned Krua Thai (was on 635 west of Central). He closed Krua, relocated to Plano, and reopened as Tamarind.
This is some of the best Thai food I have had, and it compares to the best Thai restaurants I have been to in NYC and even Bangkok (I haven't been there yet, but I have eaten there with people who have and say it some of the most authentic in the US).
My favorite dishes are the Papaya Salad, the Crispy Watercress salad... the Pad Thai and Pad See Yew are great, too. And we usually pick a random chicken dish to try (they sometimes ok and sometimes amazing, but I can't remember names). Also, they always have the most interesting specials, but they are written on a board in Thai (which I cannot read!) so make sure to ask what they are... the specials are usually better than the food that is on the menu (but you have to be a little adventurous).
If you are looking for a hip scene, this is definitely not the place to go, but the food is unbeatable. I could not believe I could find a place like this in Dallas, but it is a real gem!
Tamarind Thai is located in a shopping center at the northeast corner of Coit Rd and W Spring Creek Pkwy (3825 West Spring Creek Parkway, Plano, TX)
We stopped by Jasmine Thai tonight, and I can say that Toro and Teresa Gubbins were on the money with their comments about the restaurant.
Thai Orchid will remain a sentimental favorite for me, no doubt. But Jasmine could easily become a new favorite. The fish cakes (which have kaffir lime leaves and chile paste in them) and the batoba were eye openers for me. Also, their panang curry is made with house-made curry paste, resulting in a complexity and depth of flavor you don't often find. My son insisted on a "seafood sukiyaki soup" and, despite my initial skepticism, I decided that he made a very good choice. After tasting it, he described it as "kind of like kimchee soup with seafood and lots of fish sauce" -- a great description that almost does the dish justice.
One drawback tonight was the restaurant's ambient temperature. They had placed fans in various locations, but it was probably in the mid-80s throughout the meal. By meal's end, though, I was happily glowing from the chiles in all our dishes and will put up with a little HVAC-induced discomfort to visit Jasmine again.
Regarding the Thai menu: Our server mentioned three or four dishes not on the English menu that we should try next time, and said she would be happy to guide us through the maze. One "must try" on the English menu -- for me at least -- is Jasmine's jungle curry, which our server said was the only one she has ever tried that she likes.
The Thai menu at Jasmine Thai is worth exploring. The waitresses have been very helpful in translating and making dish suggestions. One warning, however. The waitresses tend to be overly cautious in their menu recommendations, worrying that farangs will find certain dishes too spicy, too sour, or too "authentic." Most of the items I've had off the Thai menu have been fairly accessible to all but the most conservative of palates.
Some recent items (including several shared with Kirk and Simply Victoria over the weekend) --
-- Fried sun-dried mudfish. Flattened, dried fish are deep fried and served with cucumber salad and a pair of dipping sauces. The whole fish (including bones) is eaten. I found myself passing on the tails and focusing on the meatier portions of the fish. Pretty good.
-- Lime-marinated raw shrimp with spicy sauce. Cool, tender shrimp, tartness from the lime, lots of heat from the sauce.
-- Thai herbal chicken. Small bits of chicken are rolled in a mixture of herbs and deep fried until very crispy, garnished with fried Thai basil leaves. Very enjoyable. (This one is also on the English menu, I believe.)
-- Tom yum with prawns. Sweet and sour, and with just a touch of coconut cream for richness, this was a tasty soup. The whole prawns were just right.
-- Central Thai-style sour curry. Not as sour as I expected. Most Thai curries have elements of sweet, salty, and sour; this one was just putting a little more emphasis on the sour, without becoming imbalanaced. Thin and brothy, with bamboo shoots and catfish, it was very good over rice. Spicyness wasn't really noticeable at first, but built up, the more I ate.
-- Fried red snapper with herbs and fried garlic. Beautiful, unusual, and delicious. The fish is seasoned and fried, then topped with mounds of dry herbs and bits of crispy, fried garlic. Definitely worth ordering again.
Items I've had off the English menu have usually been of comparable quality. The attraction of the Thai menu is the availability of a lot of dishes you don't typically find at Thai restaurants in Dallas.
Thanks again to Toro for recommending this place.
Finally had the chance to go to Jasmine Thai, too bad it was late on a Thursday night so we were in a hurry. We tried the basil chicken and the bataba. Wow, the basil chicken was possibly the best I've ever had (all the ingredients were so fresh, each texture was distinct and a pleasure) and the bataba was a new and great experience for me. Looking forward to going back.
Some photos: http://donnaaries.wordpress.com/2007/...
The basil chicken was a little sweet for my taste, I prefer the jungle curry I think. You might want to try Samui Thai. I tried the one in Allen this week for lunch. Got the chicken cashew and the tom yum soup. Both were good, I practically inhaled the soup and the chicken cashew was tasty although the preparation seemed a tiny bit lazy. It's also a very pretty place and the service was very attentive.
The best thai restaurant in that area since Krua Thai closed is Jasmine Thai. Krua had not been as spectacular since 2004 with new ownership. Jasmine is excellent food with a special Thai only menu with the real hot stuff. The raw crying shrimp and the garlic prawns are my favorites. I've tried all the supposed real thai restaurants in the area (About 30) and this is by far the best. I used to live in Chang Mai, Thailand and Jasmine has a more southern thai menu. The Batoba and fish cakes are a must. Cheers