A lot of U.P. Foodies were thrilled to see the former U.P. Thai Canteen open in Ortigas Home Depot early this year. Most people thought that Mommy Thai (as the owner was fondly called by U.P. students) closed the resto for good in 2006 after moving twice outside of the campus. I finally had the chance to try it in its current home near Starbucks in Ortigas Home Depot.
They have a simple line pricing menu -- all the small dishes (good for one person) are P70, while the large dishes (good for 2-3 persons) are priced at P140.
Most of us regarded SukhoThai as the standard of Thai food in the Philippines. When it closed down in the malls due to high overhead costs, we felt some sadness in our hearts. For a few months now, SukhoThai was reincarnated as Thai Pad in Marvin Plaza (where Canon Service center is located) along Pasong Tamo. At first, I was skeptical every time I see Thai Pad when I send my Canon 20d for repairs. I thought, oh no, not another one of those Thai restaurant wannabes. If they are really SukhoThai, why change the name?
Here are some stories that I heard about Thai Pad. The SukhoThai chef got sick and had to leave SukhoThai. Eventually, he setup his Som's hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Rockwell and eventually along N. Garcia. While Thai Pad, reinvented their concept to be more hole-in-the-wall setup which means, basic ambiance and affordable prices (around P100 only). It is owned by the same owner and uses the SukhoThai recipe except that their chefs are the "sous" chefs of the original SukhoThai chef. So expect same SukhoThai quality (I felt it was diluted) at 50% serving size and 50% the price.
Even if we felt the food is not as rich as before and the ingredients are kinda diluted, I would still recommend Thai Pad if you are craving for Thai comfort food. Although, Som's is the clear winner between the two in every Thai food aspect except for the Pad Thai. For some reason, Som's Pad Thai does not taste as good as Thai Pad's Pad Thai (I wanted to say that :).
I first blog about Som's when it created a buzz in Rockwell area around October of 2005 (Som's Noodle House - cheap authentic version of SukhoThai). Ever since then our verdict was the thai food comes close to Sukho Thai except the Pad Thai. Also, after our first trip to Som's in Rockwell, we never went back because the mosquitoes and flies were annoying us. Their full pledge restaurant along N. Garcia is still down to earth and serves the same quality of food. I liked their idea of having a living/dining room area with TV that you can rent for P100/ hour. It was perfect for us especially since we have kids and we are a big group of 8. Also, this is good if you want to watch a much awaited telenovela with your officemates or simply watching NBA with your friends.
Overall, Som's is highly recommended for the Sukho-Thai taste of Thai Food except for the Pad Thai.
Before heading off to watch the Chinese Acrobats, Korean Paper Doll Lanterns, and the Italian Light Display, I would recommend to eat in this no-non sense Thai place called Jatujak in Mall of Asia. It is located in the second floor , entertainment mall near the center. It is named after the famous Chatuchak weekend market in Thailand and owned by a Filipino. This is what a filipino thai food should taste like and you can order your sukho thai favorites and fulfill your thai craving. We think that it is decently priced and the food is good.
"Up until yesterday, I could only think of Muang Thai in QC to recommend...but now I've found another satisfying resto in Jatujak. Named after the world's biggest weekend market, found outside Bangkok, this restaurant presents old Thai reliables in a modern setting. Prices are reasonable and servings are more than adequate. We started with the shrimp tom yum. Although we asked for spicy (mild and medium being the other choices), we found it not unbearably hot. What we liked about the soup was that it didn't heavily rely on the spicy tom yum paste to flavor it, so you could still taste the other aromatics like galanggal and coriander. This is probably the best tom yum around here, according to my hubby, the tom yum connoisseur. We also had their fried spring rolls filled with sotanghon noodles ("glass noodles"), wood ear mushrooms and meat; they were substantial and not too oily. The pad thai boasted of nicely cooked al dente noodles, topped with loads of peanuts, beansprouts, spring onions and a couple of prawns."
Overall, Pinoy Thai Food at its bests! A little on the sweet side and you need to put kalamansi to balance it out. That is the way we like it sometimes...
Here is another best kept thai cuisine secret for all those food adventurers out there. This time, this is a hawker style (just along the road- turo turo in short) place, where it serves sukho-thai food at a very cheap price! I'm really a food adventurer and sometimes I'm criticized for only trying the expensive ones (so here's a cheap find for you). The food is cooked or supervised by a retired Sukhothai Chef who is a thai and has a family here in Makati. Som is the name of the grand daughter of the Chef. I've decided to check out Som's Noddle House instead of going to the World's longest dinner buffet in Eastwood (and the World's most unsatisfied guests - I'm glad :) Then, the next day, I also checked out SukhoThai in Megamall which is one of our favorites but we heard that it will be closing shop soon (hopefully just a rumor). Here is a blow by blow boxing match between Som's Noodle House vs. Sukho-Thai before you even try to check this one out.