Chad Thai

After having lunch at Cristos Greek Taverna and taking advantage of the deal at Chez Christophe Chocolaterie Patisserie, our next stop for Crave 2015 in Burnaby Heights was at Chad Thai Restaurant. While the name gives the initial impression of inauthentic cuisine, Chad Thai aims to provide the comforts of affordable Thai street food to a casual setting in Metro Vancouver.

What was interesting here was that the $15 set menu during Crave gave us practically free run of the entire menu for the entree. Appetizer choices were far more limited, but we did get to indulge in some Thai iced tea. The $20 menu would have upgraded the drink to beer or wine (or a house dessert) and it would have also included a bowl of soup.

Seating at Chad Thai consists of two main rows of tables, one side of which has a bench along the wall. This lends itself much more to parties of two to four people. It’s comfortable, but it can feel a little cramped getting around.

Chad Thai Restaurant
Thai Iced Tea

I get a glass of this almost every time I go out for Thai food. The Chad Thai version is lighter in its approach than most places. Neither the tea nor the sweetness level were particularly pronounced.

Chad Thai
Spring Rolls: Deep fried spring rolls filled with cabbages, carrots and glass noodles served with plum sauce

Chad Thai
Crispy Wontons: Deep fried wonton stuffed with marinated ground chicken, served with plum sauce.

Between the two appetizers, I definitely preferred the wontons over the spring rolls. The wonton skins were beautifully light and crispy. There was just the right amount of filling for the perfect two-bite wonton. The spring roll skin was definitely thicker, though I appreciate that the spring rolls were not overly greasy.

Chad Thai
Green Curry with Beef: Made with a spicy green curry paste, then cooked in coconut milk with eggplants, baby corn, peppers, green beans and kaffir lime leaves then finished with Thai basil

The green curries at some other Thai restaurants have a much more pronounced color to them, sometimes bordering on the artificial. That’s not the case here. The curry was fragrant and flavorful without being overly spicy (we opted for medium). I was disappointed to find the lack of baby corn here; most of the bowl was filled with very mild eggplant.

Chad Thai
Yen Ta Fo: Thin rice noodle in piquant sweet and sour stock and fermented tofu with calamari, fish balls, tiger prawn, water spinach, and topped with crisp tofu and crisp wonton.

All too often, we find ourselves ordering the same thing every time we go to a Thai restaurant. We usually end up with a pineapple fried rice and a plate of Pad Thai noodles. So, we decided to choose something slightly different for our Crave experience. The rice noodles here are pretty well the same as Vietnamese pho, but the fermented tofu-tasting stock is decidedly different. I enjoyed the noodles and soup, though the seafood tasted like it had been frozen.

This was not our first visit to Chad Thai, nor will it be our last. The food is generally rich and flavorful without being too heavy-handed with spices and seasoning. Dishes arrived quickly at our table and service, while clearly rushed, was friendly and efficient.

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