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You can't judge a book (or a restaurant) by it's cover

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Don’t be fooled by a pretty face. Every review I’ve read about Takeda Thai raves about the fancy facade and upscale interior of this small strip mall restaurant. I think belief is suspended at the door, as most reviewers go on to praise the food. Phoenix Magazine even rated it one of the 23 best new restaurants in its October issue. That actually is my reason for writing this entry - to give a dissenting view.

For lunch today, we ordered pad thai ($7.95 from the lunch menu, $13.95 at dinner), garlic mini pork ribs ($10.95) and angel wings ($11.95) from the appetizer section.
Our very nice waitress brought us two bowls of soup instead of the one we were entitled to. It was a mild chicken soup with a few vegetables and some tofu floating in it. OK, certainly not notable. Then the rest of the dishes came out. I was truly shocked by the plate of riblets. There were 6 tiny riblets on a bed of wilted lettuce. Remember, these cost $10.95!!! They had been fried to death and had no garlic taste. I looked closely at the lettuce and noticed a few bits of overly browned garlic sprinkled on it. These clearly had never touched the ribs. This was downright insulting. The portion size of the angel wings was somewhat better. Angel wings are large chicken wings which have been boned and stuffed with vegetables, minced chicken and glass noodles, then fried and sliced. Like the riblets, these had been overcooked and were totally dried out. The insipid “sweet and sour chili dip” tasted only of sugar, and dunking the slices of wing in it did not revive them. Somehow the “chef” even managed to turn out dry pad thai with a horrible fishy back taste. When our waitress came over and asked which was our favorite thing, the only answer I could give was “the service”. Our cost, even with a 10% discount coupon, came to $40.

I guess I could give the restaurant and its reviewers the benefit of the doubt and say that perhaps since it was lunch time a talented chef was not on duty. However, if that’s the case, and no one better than the person who was in the kitchen could be found, then lunch should not be served

The only review I read that got it even partly right was from AZ Central. It said “the kitchen assumes you don’t want to play with fire, so everything here is mild enough to feed a newborn.”

I hope you won’t think I’m a grouch, but I did want to warn you.

Takeda Thai
10271 N. Scottsdale Rd. Scottsdale

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  1. Thanks for posting. We also had a bad experience. Yes, it is a pretty space. About half of the chicken in my wife's dish was literally raw. Ice cold inside. She didn't notice this until she was halfway through and got to the raw stuff. We brought it to the attention of our server, who sent over the owner. The owner apologized, but that's it. Said she would talk to the kitchen.

    I'm sorry, but when you serve raw chicken you ought to do more to remedy the screw-up. Thankfully my wife didn't get sick.

    Perhaps their lack of experience as restauranteurs was showing that day, but it was a bad enough experience that I'll never go back.

    There's more to a restaurant than a pretty face.