134 Robertson Road
Pad Thai: $13
272 Dalhousie St.
Rating: *** 1/2
Pad Thai: $11
Sala Thai Cuisine
2666 Alta Vista Drive
Pad Thai: $12
Singha Thai Fine Cuisine
1514 Merivale Rd.
Pad Thai: $9
Pad Thai is the ultimate street food in Thailand, and a popular dish at any Thai restaurant. For me, the best Pad Thai isn’t oily but has a fresh, balanced flavour that’s slightly salty from the fish sauce, a touch sour from the tamarind, has a hint of sweetness from the palm sugar and a kiss of spice from the chiles. As for texture, the noodles should be somewhat chewy and the peanuts generously sprinkled on top to add crunch to each bite.
I sampled Pad Thai at four Ottawa restaurants in search of my favourite among them. The best one I tasted was at Sukhothai. For the shrimp lover, this traditional version of Pad Thai ($13) was perfect. All the required elements blended well together without any one flavour dominating my taste buds. This little restaurant is often astoundingly busy, which means that you better get there early if you want a seat.
If you’re in the Byward Market, a good Pad Thai is at Royal Thai where it also comes with shrimp. For the famished, they serve a very large portion. For the vegetarian, the Pad Thai ($12) at Sala Thai is good, although it was more sour than I like.
Lastly, the Pad Thai ($9) at Singha Thai is easy on price, heavy on sugar, but comes with chicken for the meat lover.
Have fun noodling for your own perfect Pad Thai.
Life of Pie At Life of Pie, you’ll find a variety of pies, including options like Curried Chicken Pie, Chocolate Kahlua Pie or good old Apple Pie. On Saturdays, enjoy cinnamon buns and scones, muffins and cupcakes. 70A Leonard Ave. (613) 693-1853.
Fettuccine’s A 25-year old establishment on Elgin Street, Fettuccine’s offers fine Italian cuisine. Stop by the shop and pick up some fresh pasta, sauces, salads and desserts. 280C Elgin St. (613) 230-4723.
SIP Spanish and Chilean wine with Toni Batet Collado of Family Wine Merchants, a Niagara company, tonight at the Vendange Institute at 7 p.m. $42 per person for members. sommelierguild.com/content/view/415/34/