Friday, June 29, 2007

Coriander - I Wouldn't Mind Being Thai'd to a Tree and Force-Fed This Food

Restaurant: Coriander
Address: 845 Market Street, Westfield SF Center, Food Emporium
Cuisine: Thai
Date Last Visited: May 17, 2007

I swear, I am conquering the Westfield Center’s Food Emporium. It’s just that it’s so convenient to dine here. All I have to do is walk down the street, enter through Bloomie’s, walk down a very short staircase, walk through the home furnishings department, and exit Bloomie’s straight into the Food Emporium.

The Food Emporium is extraordinary. The first time I went there I was memorized. There was no Subway, or Panda Express, or Great Steak and Potato. We actually had some places that rival some of the eateries out there in the middle of Downtown.

Coriander is a “point at what you want” place. I was a little reluctant to eat there because I really didn’t know how long the food has been sitting there. However, I saw a few patrons eating the yellow chicken curry with white rice. I LOVE curry. A lot of people stay away from it. I don’t know why. It’s so complex. Plus there are so many types of curry. You have your Indian, Japanese, Chinese…Thai curry is one of my favorite foods.

They do combos here. You get to choose a starch (rice or noodles) and some entrees to eat it with. A two-item combo is $8.50. I swear, the girl behind the counter must’ve been wondering what the hell was wrong with me because I couldn’t make up my mind whether or not I wanted to spend that much money. I’m CHEAP! What can I say? But that yellow curry hooked me in. I also got a Sweet Basil Chicken to go with it.

Boy, am I glad I got this. The yellow curry has pieces of chicken, chunks of potato, and slices of white onion in it. I thought the flavor of the onion would be too strong for the creamy curry, but it was just right. I actually liked that slight crunch when I had a bite of chicken, onion, and rice. The sauce is so friggin’ good. It’s subtle. Some people are scared of curry because they all think it’s all the same. Japanese curry is so different from Indian, as are Thai and Chinese. They get a little turned off by the smell, but seriously, the flavor is far subtler than the smell. I loved how the white jasmine rice absorbed the curry. Oh my! How delicious.

The Sweet Basil Chicken was good, also. I wouldn’t order it again, however. Because it was sitting there for a little while, parts of the pieces of chicken, especially the ends did get a little dry. That’s why it is safer to get a “wet” entrée than a fried one, unless you know they consistently replenish it. I know they do that with the Orange-flavored chicken at Panda Express because it’s so high in demand. In places where there isn’t too much foot-traffic, be aware of what sells out fast because it usually is made fresh throughout the day.

Anyway, I will move on. The basil seemed like it was fried because it was crunchy. It was really interesting because it crunches in your mouth like nori (dried seaweed). The sauce was sweet with a hint of chili. I didn’t eat too much of this because I was head-over-heels in love with the yellow curry.

I did think like a heffa in the beginning, and foolishly thought I could finish the whole plate in one sitting. That’s why I was so reluctant to pay the 9 bucks because I didn’t know it would fill me up. But alas, it did, and it gave me some great leftovers for dinner that night. I didn’t explore their other options for the entrees, but it doesn’t matter. I’ll be back for the yellow chicken curry any day. Their Pad Thai look scrumpdillyupmtious, but that’s a whole other story. Coriander, Westfield Food Emporium. TRY IT. NOW!

Coriander Gourmet Thai Kitchen on Urbanspoon