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Royal Thai

June 27, 2010

476 Portrush Rd
Linden Park SA 5065
(08) 8379 2335

Open Wed-Sun for lunch & dinner

A recommendation from one of my tight Thai crew, Royal Thai is another little resaurant favourited by the locals in the area as the “go to” Thai eatery. This place isn’t too far from town either and if you’re after somewhere to eat that isn’t on The Parade then Royal Thai is a valid compromise. Just how true is the local gospel? Onwards to the review!

Final Score: 7.05/10

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Crispy Chilli Garlic Beef

Welcome to yet another installment of Chow’s garlic-with-pork-or-beef review!  Maybe I should rename my review to that … but let’s not judge so early on. Royal Thai has been recommended to me and I have read a few reviews that were positive so things should be looking up!

The venue here is a surprise once you step foot inside. From the exterior you are greeted by a kind of cheap looking fluro orange banner which doesn’t make the greatest first impression. However, once inside it’s like you can forget about the tacky sign and be pleasantly surprised with a smart modern looking room, very much like the last two places we’ve just visited. Chocolate brown seems to be the current in style fashion for modern home renovations, especially with a red feature wall … and Royal Thai are right up this alley. A nice modern interior, combined with a few very nice Thai statues and artworks makes this place a cut above the latest places we’ve just reviewed. The dining setting was very neat and the layout was very effecient for the limited amount of dance floor they had.

Service here is pretty much on par with what you’d expect from any other restaurant you’ve visited – no more and no less. No complaints can be made about our waitress who was very friendly, and interestingly another person on my table asked for their “best dish” just like I always do, and the waitress was consistent with her recommendation and we both got the Crispy Chilli Garlic Beef – so, good work there! The food was reasonably quick to come out initially, however some dishes were a bit staggered and one or two people had to wait a few extra minutes even though the place was less than half-full. The only other slight hiccup was they over-charged us for some entrees which was just a small maths error.

So you might be thinking how come lately I always get recommended the Chinese-restaurant-looking dishes … and I am as well. I remember the last time I had crispy beef was at Duthy Thai but this time it was more Thai-twang than Chinese sweet’n’sour. The taste of the coating wasn’t too bad, and the salt, garlic and chili was definitely prominent in and around the strips of deep fried beef. However I found that the pieces of meat themselves were pretty tough, almost dry … and the texture really reminded me of KFC popcorn chicken! The crispiness was great on the outside but I was expecting tender beef on the inside which unfortuantely failed to deliver … and the other person on my table who got the same dish concurred with my revelations. If only the meat was tender then I would have given this a much more positive yarn! Oh well, at least it tasted alright and looked very tasty (royal presentation).

What do I reckon? On this particular occaision this place was like a short rollercoaster ride, but much safer than the one at the Royal Show. You might experience a slight drop in heart when you look at their ugly orange sign (the boring slow take-off time of the rollercoaster ride), then once inside things are looking pretty good and you’re excited to sit down in a nice environment (the first and only big dipper of the ride) but then you are given an alright dish that has great flavour but not the best quality (the disppointment of how short your rollercoaster ride was).  Overall the service here is pretty good, I’m sure the food here is good otherwise but for now I’m not too impressed. Don’t rule Royal Thai out of your shopping list as their prices are reasonable … but just don’t expect too much, especially if you’re royalty!

  • Service [7.1/10] : Friendly waitressing, otherwise just your regular run’o’mill.
  • Quality [6.0/10] : Hmm, I can see this being great if the meat was tender!
  • Venue [8.1/10] : Modern and neat, enough Asian decor to make you feel cultured.
  • Value [7.0/10] : Pretty cheap for portion sizes but there’s been cheaper for simlar quality.

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