Thai Square
Comments () | Published October 18, 2006
Thai Square
Address: 3217 Columbia Pike, Arlington, VA 22204
Phone: 703.685.7040
Neighborhood: Arlington
Cuisines: Thai
Opening Hours: Open daily for lunch and dinner.
Nearby Metro Stops: Pentagon City
Price Range: Inexpensive
Dress: Informal
Noise Level: N/A
Reservations: Not Needed
Best Dishes Kanom jeeb; pig’s-knuckle stew; honey-roasted duck; stir-fry of catfish, eggplant, and rhizome.
Price Details: Appetizers $3.50 to $9.50, entrées $8.95 to $12.95.

June 2006 Cheap Eats

This sweet Arlington dining room--the destination of choice for Thai expats who want a fix of home cooking--gets better and better. It elevates the familiar into something memorable while also making the unconventional feel comfortable.

Salads here are heaping mounds of crunch and texture, whether it's a tangle of green papaya with tomato and peanuts, flank steak with crunchy roasted rice, or minced pork and pork rind with ginger. Pad Thai is a perfect balance of sweet, tart, and fishy; pad see-ew (get it with pork) with caramelized rice noodles is a high point, too. Curries, such as the fiery country-style curry with eggplant, green beans, and a choice of meats, are intricate in flavor.

Adventure awaits in a plate of crunchy fried squid with basil--even the basil leaves are fried crisp--and a dish of catfish that gets a double whammy of chili peppers and paste. Even better is fragrant pig-knuckle stew, a braised knee-joint of pork with cinnamon and star anise. And chili-dusted, sun-dried beef or pork is fireworks on the palate.

Look to specials for sweets. Most revolve around sticky rice with ripe slices of mango or a spill of coconut cream.
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Posted at 07:12 PM/ET, 10/18/2006 RSS | Print | Permalink | Washingtonian.com Restaurant Reviews