Wednesday, April 6, 2011

San Francisco: Osha Thai

On Friday night, I joined a moderately large group (~12 people) for dinner at Osha Thai in SOMA, celebrating Aman's birthday.  The scene is dark, loud, and trendy, with lounge-like seating on wide wooden benches between the tables, and funny prism-shaped pillows to delineate the boundaries between groups.  First, we started with some shared appetizers.  These were the crab rangoon, which I haven't had since some Americanized Chinese buffet when I was very young.  For some reason they tasted better than I remembered them, probably because memory had failed and I wasn't expecting cheese to gush out of the fried wrapper.

We also tried some samosas, which were very flavorful and had a more delicate texture than I expected:

Shawn and I decided to share two entrees, the first being the "Spicy Thai Noodles" with tofu.  Using a generous amount of oil is really the only way to prevent rice noodles from clumping, but fortunately the spicing here was excellent and stood up well to the grease.

Our second dish was a "new" pork-based curry called Hung Lay curry, served with fried rotis.  This supposedly Northwest Thai curry, with lots of ginger and garlic, was both incredibly good and incredibly rich.  The spiciness of the noodles sort of helped cut the richness, but just barely, and I was glad that we were sharing.

Across from me, Ed ordered the crab fried rice, which fortunately had a noticeable amount of crab chunks.  I tried some and thought it was pretty good (albeit a little salty), and he seemed to enjoy it as well.

The servers here do an admirable job of negotiating around large and often boisterous groups, as well as taking orders and serving dishes in a very noisy atmosphere.  For dessert, they brought Aman a warm chocolate cake (with candle), accompanied by the already low lights being turned [almost] completely off as we sang happy birthday :-).

Tomorrow I am headed back to St. Louis for a program revisit, though I have enough posts lined up to cover the gap while I'm traveling.