|Thai Orchid got second place in the Salem Mid-Valley for "Best Thai Food"|
Thai Orchid's menu features your traditional soup, salad, noodle, and stir fried dishes. For many of the dishes, you will have your choice of vegetarian, chicken, beef, or seafood (shrimp, squid, or combination).
While I've had their Pad Thai (a pretty tasty Pad Thai at that), I recently went for their #10 lunch special: Pad Ruam Mit (mixed vegetables with choice of meat/seafood). I asked for the seafood combination, extra hot.
I did get the meal to go, and I opened the container at home. My initial reaction to the food: a very small portion of vegetables and seafood. I counted two shrimp, two mussels, and two scallops, plus what is really a handful of vegetables. Heck, there is more rice in there than vegetables and seafood!
I was also disappointed that Thai Orchid's take on "extra hot" is only a mild spice to me. At least when I went to Thai Beer, I could smell the angriness of the Thai chili spices emanating from the food. I did not get that same sensation here. In fact, right after tasting the food for spiciness, I reached into my refrigerator and put about 15 drops of a 2-million-Scoville-unit hot sauce into the food. Yeah, I don't mess around with my spice, folks.
Furthermore, the vegetables and seafood lacked flavor here. While I at least saw Thai Orchid's attempt at "extra hot" (there were red chili flakes in there), I undoubtedly prefer Thai Beer's version of spicy.
Personally, I only went back to Thai Orchid to rate the restaurant. I don't know how Thai Orchid nabbed second place for Best Thai Food in the Salem Mid-Valley. If this establishment is getting second place, I know I need to get out of Salem for better-quality Thai food. 3.5/10