November 21, 2008 · 0 comments

in atlanta, dining out

First, I’d like to announce that I’ve decided that I am prepared to accept Paul Johnson as my savior, after the 41 to 23 thrashing of of the Miami Hurricanes by our Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets last night.

Back to the post at hand, this week I ate one of my favorite kinds of food – Thai food. I’ve discussed Thai recently on this site, but it’s been months since I’ve had it and I was craving it pretty bad. There aren’t many Thai places really close to me, so I decided to give Spoon a try.

I’ve been to Spoon once before, and after my first meal there I was not overly impressed. While the food was acceptable, I didn’t think it was special and I thought there were better values for equivalant money. After my most recent visit, I pretty much feel the same way, but there are some things worth noting.

Spoon is located right by Georgia Tech, and as such, there are a lot of people that look to be around 20-25 years old, usually filling up the small, hip space. It’s dimly lit with cool old hardwood floors and a has a cool bar near the back of the room. The menu has a lot of the traditional Thai dishes: Pad Thai, Massaman (which they spell Massamun just to throw me off I guess), and my good old stand-by, Penang Curry.

They do have some variations from the norm, such as the tofu corn cake appetizer that we started with, which was very good. It had great texture and the tofu acted superbly as the binding agent for the cake, which did not fall apart at all and was served with a tasty dipping sauce.

They also have good looking specials every night, but they are often pricey. Their wine list is relatively expansive and interesting as well, with a good number of wines by the glass. However, when eating Thai, I always go with Singha (aka Thai Beer).

Katie ended up getting the Massamun with tofu, which is one of the many add-ons such as chicken, fish, or shrimp that you can select to add to any dish. It was tasty, and the tofu was cooked perfectly, but otherwise the dish didn’t really stand out.

The same could be said for what I ate, the Kang Keaw Wan (Green Curry). It was good, but there really wasn’t much to it. The addition of thinly sliced eggplant was nice. Maybe the specialties would be more exciting and unique, so I’ll have to go for that next time.

They also were offering a 3 course prix fixe menu as part of the OpenTable appetite stimulus plan. While this could be a good deal, and Spoon’s meal included lobster tail penang, does a $35 per person (no tax, no tip, no drinks) meal seem like a “oh during this economy, spending $50 per person on dinner is such a bargain!” kind of dining experience? I dunno, maybe it’s just me but I would think they want butts in seats and if they had a $20 or $25 meal, even if it had less expensive ingredients, I would be more prone to going. Thoughts?

Last thing to mention – our service was not very good at all. There was a table of 20+ people with one waitress, who also happened to be our waitress. While she did her best, everything went super slow. Luckily we were not in a hurry. I did appreciate when our waitress said  “I’m very sorry for the wait, please come back again and I will do better next time.”

The slow service wasn’t entirely her fault, but I appreciated her not offering excuses and making a statement such as this. That statement alone wants me to give them another chance. What are everyone else’s thoughts on slow service and how the wait staff reacts? Does anyone else feel the same as me regarding the above statement?

It’s really easy to judge service sometimes, and I often feel like I’m being too harsh of a critic. Just wait until my next restaurant post; I’m hoping to dive into this topic a bit more. Ever walk into a restaurant and go “how is this place making any money???”. Well, that’s what I hope to dig into.

While I think there are other places in Atlanta to have superior Thai food at comparable costs (Surin, Harry and Son’s, and Bangkok), I think it’s worth giving Spoon a shot to see how you like it, but I recommend you try something out of the ordinary, because the standard thai dishes are just that, standard.

Open: M-F 11AM to 11PM, Sat 4PM to 11PM
Dinner menu can be viewed here.
Yelp Reviews Here

Spoon on Urbanspoon

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