Thursday, June 10, 2010

Charm Rice & Noodle: Finally, real Thai in South Pasadena?

Tom yum noodles were packed with rice noodles, fish balls, fishcake slices, minced chicken and shrimp. The tangy broth was mild but comforting -- ask for more heat if you like.

Patakan Thai on Fair Oaks Ave. seems to have taken a cue from Saladang up the street: The strip mall Thai spot has spawned a new restaurant a few doors down with a more authentic menu of Thai noodles and rice dishes. Admittedly, Patakan is not the most exciting Thai food, but as the only Thai restaurant in town, they kind of had a corner on the market. So far I've only had one dish from Charm but I'm cautiously optimistic that even though it has the same owners, Charm will spice up my South Pasadena eating -- plus, they deliver! The menu is definitely promising. Here are some of the more unusual dishes:

-- Kha kaprow gai sub -- spicy ground chicken with basil, garlic and fried egg over rice
-- Khao honey pork stew
-- Baa-mee nong gai -- egg noodles with bbq pork and bok choy
-- Guew jub -- rice flake noodles in herbal broth with fried tofu, hard-boiled egg, pork slices, pork intestine, crispy pork
-- Sweet black sticky rice dessert with coconut milk and sweet corn

Charm Rice & Noodle
711 Fair Oaks Ave. #K
South Pasadena


SinoSoul said...

The fact they serve Thai kway chap is so ridiculous awesome. Doesn't make me any less scared to drive on Fair Oak (too many po po's), but still awesome. Kaprow gai over rice topped with an egg is one of the quintessential Thai lunch dishes as well. Good lookin' out!

Daniel Carlin said...

mmm Thai.. but in south pas?.. gota give it a visit.

Reeves@Tasty Thailand said...

Looks similar from your photo but not quite like the real thing. I think, from living in LA, I can honestly say the Thai restaurants try but not being able to get access to 'real' Thai ingredients (they just don't taste the same as they do here in Thailand as they're not absolutely fresh), it's never going to be the real thing.

Good try though!

Brian said...

I'm a friend of Charles Rosenberg's - met you at Mandarette awhile back...had the Tom Yum last night and it was delicious. Great menu, inexpensive, flavorful.
Granted the plain, unassuming joint isn't much on atmosphere but we were both quite happy with our meal (and will return.) Thanks for your post! - Brian

E. said...

I have eaten at this place before but for a totally great dining experience I recommend Thai Grill 7814 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood, CA.

The Thai bbq chicken is so tender it falls off the bone, while the papaya salad bursts with flavorful zest all over your tongue. It's a small and cozy place, great for the family or a date. Prices are good while the portions are large.