Dating sexy thais
For an immersion course in the pandan-floral, coconut-creamy, tapioca-chewy, occasionally salty, and often translucent pleasures of the Thai-dessert pantheon, you could do no better than the display case of this quaint Elmhurst café.It used to be that the plan of action was to dine on incendiary steam-table curries around the corner at sister shop Khao Kang, then repair here for something sweet(ish).When betel leaves are available, it’d be nothing short of a mistake to skip them, wrapped around a heady mixture of fresh ginger, coconut, dried shrimp, and shrimp paste, plus peanuts and chiles.And you’d be hard-pressed to find a better khao soy, the northern-style, coconut-based, whole-chicken-leg curry, made golden with fresh turmeric and featuring homemade egg noodles.Sections of the menu are labeled “Food to Die For” and “Something So Special” and the dishes within them tend to earn these distinctions.
Kitchen 79, on the border of Jackson Heights and Elmhurst and decorated a bit like a tidy, high-end nightclub (lots of black-and-white leather and glitzy light fixtures), is an excellent place to retrain your palate by familiarizing yourself with classics like gaeng tai pla — a deeply fishy, insanely fiery (not for everyone, but catnip for some) mackerel-based curry bobbing with curls of shrimp, tender cubes of pumpkin, and half-globes of barely crunchy Thai eggplant.
Sripraphai has come a long way since its early days as the no-frills holy grail of New York Thai food.
Expansions and renovations have brought a beautiful patio out back, replete with burbling fountain and leafy apple tree, and actual (if not -worthy) décor.
But the savory-snack menu has expanded to such a degree that that’s no longer necessary — especially if you’re in the mood for a credible khao soy, or one of the over-rice dishes, including what passes for American fried rice in Thailand (it involves fried chicken, hot dogs, ketchup, and a sunnyside egg).
For dessert: a coconut-ice-cream sundae, showered with peanuts, palm seeds, sweet-potato cubes, and a healthy splash of condensed milk.
If you can’t stand the heat, this isn’t the kitchen for you.