From the garden to your table at Thai n Wok | Panjim
Thai food originates from Thailand but it is loved worldwide for it’s rich history and flavor. Thai N Wok is one such place that does not disappoint providing an authentic culinary experience. Owned by Goan Warren Vaz and his wife Dew Sivapon Vaz from Thailand, the charming quaint restaurant is situated on the Marriott Resort Road in Miramar – Panjim.
Warren Vaz has been in the restaurant business for over 34 years with Dew and her family being involved in the restaurant business in Thailand. Now being associated with Thailand, both Warren and Dew saw the opportunity to bring the real experience of Thailand to Goa’s residents. Thus was born Thai N Wok. Established in the 2014 it has steadily built a loyal following.
Well before they opened the doors to Thai N Wok the couple prepared themselves well by identifying the essentials of Thai cuisine that were readily available fresh here in Goa.
The main reason for the refreshing deliciousness of their menu is the sourcing of ingredients directly from their farm in Saligao. Spread across the vast garden are rich hues of green that make the flavors of Thai cuisine. From Kefir Lime leaves to Thai broccoli, from Chinese kale to Galangal or Thai ginger; all the ingredients from the menu are sourced directly from their 1100 sq meter farm. Nothing says freshness like a meal that is straight from the farm to your plate.
All the sauces and curry pastes are made by Dew herself, using recipes that has been passed down through generations. She single handedly infuses thousands of years of Thai heritage into flavors and aromas that find their way onto your plate.
Rich, decadent hues of red and gold envelop you as you walk into the restaurant. Dark, wooden table settings with elaborate portraits of Thai art and culture provide a delightful sight to the eyes. Artistic and reminiscent, the paintings and artefacts are directly bought from the lanes of North Thailand which is home to Dew. The interiors, designed by Warren, are tastefully done up in subtle colors of red and gold and the ambiance makes for a cosy and inviting experience.
We started with a conventional Cosmopolitan cocktail and a unique signature mocktail called the Appy Swappy Twist, a refreshing fruity drink with a hint of apple.
The menu has pictures of the dish that accompany the names, like in a lot of places in Thailand. For those looking for traditional soups, try the Tom Yum soup or the Tom Kha, both of which have a delicate depth of flavor with lemongrass, kefir lime and coconut milk, all key ingredients in authentic Thai cuisine.
The satay chicken served with peanut sauce and the Thot Pla (Fried fish/prawn cakes) are a perfect choice for starters. The prawn cakes are great to go with your drinks, with a nice and crunchy taste. Accompanying this were the classic Por Pia Thod or Fried Spring Rolls, a delectable appetizer which also as Dew informs us, is a popular snack sold on the streets of Thailand.
The Som Tum Thaipapaya salad is a must-have for all the health conscious folks, made with green papaya, crushed peanuts and Thai chilies. A particularly stellar dish that stands out is the Pad Pak Beung Fai Dang. It is a sautéed vegetable dish made with Morning Glory, a hard-to-find ingredient that is grown on their farm. A must have for anyone who loves their greens.
For main course, rice-lovers can opt for the Kao Phad (fried rice) and Gang Khiawan (Thai Hot Green Curry with Chicken, Pork or Prawn), which has a rich and aromatic flavor. Or you can also try the less spicy Pha Nang, a red curry sauce thickened with coconut milk. Other popular favourites on the menu also include seafood dishes like the Pla Tod Sam Rod (Deep fried fish in hot and sour sauce), Pla Tod La Prink (Deep fried fish in pineapple and chilli sauce) and the Phad Thai (Stir fried Thai noodles with sprout and meat).
The desserts were a highlight of the meal, with the creamy deliciousness of Song Kleung Ice Cream. Made with tender coconut ice-cream and topped with candied fruits that are only available in Thailand, this dessert goes right up our alley of familiar yet exotic delicacies.
Another unique dessert on the menu is the Tho Pap, Dew’s recipe from her village in north Thailand which incidentally is hard to come by in Bangkok. A sticky rice puff stuffed with soft and cushy Moong Dal dressed in grated coconut and sugar, Tho Pap is the perfect sweet, soft and crunchy end to your meal.
Customary to Thai culture, Dew offers us a soothing Green Tea after our meal, which is flavored with Pandanus leaves and helps in digestion. This is served in a charming green tea kettle that adds to our Thai experience.
Thai n Wok provides a great dining experience; it delivers the right balance in the four signature tastes of Thailand: Sweet, Sour, Salty and Spicy. If you have always equated Thai food to Red and Green curry then this is a place you ought to visit. If you have recently travelled to Thailand and are craving a Thai fix then Thai N Wok is a great option. With some Thai vegetables hard to find, the fact that the couple decided to grow all of the vegetables in their own fields is commendable. Ask for Dew who will not only help you through your order but share interesting tit-bits of her childhood in Thailand to accompany your meal.
Location: Thai N Wok, Melruio Building, Marriott Hotel Road, Miramar – Panjim, Goa 403001
Article By Amanda Vaz