Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
Oct 9, 2006 12:04 AM

Review Bangkok Villa - Santa Rosa (1169 Yulupa Ave)

Bangkok Villa was our second Thai place since moving up to Sonoma County and it was fairly good... definitely better than the place on Mendocino Blvd (in front of a Motel owned by the same people).

First, if this 2nd visit tends to confirm the pattern that Thai places up here might represent a different region of Thailand that we had experienced in L.A.

> Many Different Dishes
> Different Names for the Same Dishes
> The word structure for the names also seems very different... almost Vietnamese seeming (to my uninformed brain)
> 2nd Thai place in a row that has no Brown Rice... what up with that?

Even with the regional differences...there seemed to be quite a bit of Wine Country influences.

> We started off with a Cucumber Salad that had a very California / Meditteranean feel to it... kind of like a creamy vinaigrette... rather than the usual Lime Juice / Chile style. Pretty good on its own... but not so interesting within the realm of a trip to a Thai restaurant.

> From the Chef suggestions... an artfully carved Cucumber boat with Crabmeat at the base, and then a medium sized poached Shrimp in a Wasabi-Guacamole type sauce. The shrimp was fairly fishy & it was kind of hard to eat (too big for 1 bite... hard to cut without destroying it) but otherwise pleasant.

> A Prik Khing like dish without the green beans. Tender strips of Skirt Steak sauteed then added to sauteed vegetables with a thin, spicy red curry & plenty of Thai basil. Very good...but might be too skimpy on the beef.

> "Sweated" vegetables with a rich Peanut Sauce. Very good... but didn't seem very authentic. Could be a nice side dish...if you don't want to eat Noodles or Rice (because of Carbs etc.,)

> Pad Thai... same old, same old.. but not interesting at all. Kind of bland. Could have definitely used more Tamarind Paste, Ground Peanuts & Chile.

> Jasmine Rice. Played its role.

> Mango & Sticky Rice. The sticky rice was better than average (although it could have used a lot more sesame seeds)...the mango a bit pale looking but decent enough.

$70 for Four (Tax & Tip included)

Overall a pretty good place. This will be the go to Thai place here..until I find a better one... or can bring myself to cook Thai food authentically (I was end up reducing the Oil & Sugar...and screw up the dishes).

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Is brown rice a normal dish at L.A. Thai restaurants? I don't know that I've ever seen it in one here.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston

      Every single Thai place in L.A. serves Brown Rice as the default Rice... people who order white sometimes get disapproving looks.

      I vastly prefer Brown Rice.

      1. re: Eat_Nopal

        Really? Even the restaurants Thai people frequent?

        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          It seems that the only Thai people in West L.A. or those that work / own the restaurants... as such you never see any Thai people eating at them.

          I guess it must just be one of those West L.A. / Whole Foods Buffs fads and not really the traditional Thai thing I thought it was.

          1. re: Eat_Nopal

            I was eating Thai/Issan food in OC three years ago and never saw brown rice offered.

      1. re: Melanie Wong

        Just like you noted... the soups were weak... a big pitfall for me... rarely do we not got a soup at Thai. The Thai BBQ Chicken was quite good, no Brown Rice (which ticked me off)... I don't remember the other dish (and it was only 1 week ago).

        There was also a bad energy about the place that sort of sealed its fate.

        Should I give it another try... do you have some insights on what I should try?

        1. re: Eat_Nopal

          Per my linked post.

          For soups, try Thai House downtown. It's been about 5 years since I've had thai food in LA, but I don't recall brown rice. Maybe this is a new fad.

          1. re: Melanie Wong

            Brown rice is an option at Phuket Thai on Divis at Haight. It's the best neighborhood Thai for us, but not really worth a trip otherwise.

            I can't remember seeing brown rice anywhere else in San Francisco or Thailand, though I've never been to the south of Thailand.

            1. re: SteveG

              Recently I encountered Brown Rice imported from Thailand aimed for Thai consumers (barely any English writing) at G&G Market (they specialize in Asian products)... so it has to be consumed by Thais somewhere.... maybe its a lower class food?

      2. The original comment has been removed
        1. The original comment has been removed