I love getting emails or comments from readers who’ve tried a place I’ve written about. But recently, I got an email from someone suggesting a Thai restaurant I hadn’t heard of. Giving may be better than receiving, but receiving a tip like that feels pretty damn good.
Chang Thai Restaurant is tucked out of the way in Ñuñoa, on Irarrázaval near where it intersects with Salvador. Hardly a culinary hub. But as I lay dying of the plague – perhaps a slight exaggeration, although I was sick enough to be given three days off work – a spicy curry sounded like just the thing for my painful throat, so off we went.
And it was fantastic, despite the deep purple lighting which, along with my illness, I’m choosing to blame for my crap photos. My pisco sour with huacatay apparently had medicinal properties, but more importantly it tasted good. Rodolfo stuck with beer from a local microbrewery.
The Thai spring rolls were good, although I was surprised that they were fried. When I read rice paper, I was expecting a soft wrapper, but that probably says more about my ignorance than it does about Chang Thai restaurant.
The real star though was the pollo crispy. That just means crispy chicken, which doesn’t sound too impressive. But simple dishes are often blah precisely because they don’t take much concentration, and this had clearly been done with as much care as anything else on the menu.
Rodolfo is a good Chilean and therefore gravitates to any kind of rice dish, whatever the cuisine. He was happy with his khow pad ka prow with beef.
My green curry was exactly what I needed. I would have liked to have it in a bowl to make scooping up all the juice easier, but as far as the flavor goes I have no complaints. I asked for it “gringo spicy,” since “Chilean spicy” means mild and “Thai spicy” would have probably burned my face off, and it was perfect.
As we were leaving, we had a chance to talk to the chef and thank him for a great meal. He’s Thai and said that he offers cooking classes and in-home catering on his days off from Chang Thai restaurant (Sunday and Monday). So of course now I’m plotting how I can send my husband to learn to make green curry. Then I’d never have to go back to Chang Thai, although with so many other dishes on the menu that sounded good, I’m sure I’d still find myself back there sooner rather than later.
More in this series:
Saturday in Santiago