Restaurant Review: Malai Kitchen

Jamie Hoover, Cindy Ciotta, and Natalie Ryan

Two white girls and an Asian walk into a Thai food restaurant. It’s actually ironic because the two whiteys have been there previously before the Asian.  Do you want to hear something even funnier….the Asian asked the whiteys for help to read the Thai menu. We were debating on an appetizer, but eventually came to the conclusion of tuna spring rolls. While we waited, the waiter brought out complimentary sticky rice with a side of eggplant sauce. This dish was rather small for 3 people, but the quality made up for it. The rice was very sticky, yet still tasted delicious. It was very tempting to devour the eggplant sauce, because of its unique flavor. When the spring rolls came out we were skeptical of the exterior, because of its clear coating. The tuna rolls had a very fresh and fishy taste.They were good if you are a fish lover and are accustomed to seeing raw fish aka sushi.

Even though I am Asian, I am raised white so going to Asian restaurants is new to me. The most Asian thing that I eat somewhat regularly is Pei Wei and P.F. Chang’s, which are both pretty Americanized. Therefore, a lot of the food and ingredients used at Malai Kitchen are foreign to me, so thank goodness I had Jamie and Cindy who had eaten there before. Jamie suggested drunken noodles and I trust her since we have been best friends since second grade and she knows me pretty well. I ordered drunken noodles with chicken, and even though I trusted Jamie I was still a little edgy because I had never had Thai food before, but when it came out my doubt drifted away. It looked so delicious, it was thick noodles in like an almost soy sauce with juicy chicken and colorful vegetables. It smelled so good. Before I go on, I forgot to mention that even though I am basically white, I still love to use chopsticks. I enjoy the challenge of using them, but they delay my eating time a lot. I was eating at the rate of a sloth, but the flavors stuck on my tongue. Between the salty taste of the soy sauce, soft thick noodles, and sauteed vegetables my mouth tingled with joy. What would Thai food be without sriracha hot sauce, I thought to myself?  I love spicy, hot food, but my dad buys sriracha sauce and I did not really like his kind, but in the spirit of trying new things I thought what the heck. I out a little on my noodle and I instantly fell in love. It tasted exactly like Frank’s Red Hot sauce, which i put on everything. This was a terrific surprise. Overall I would say my meal of drunken noodles was an amazing hit.

Asian food… it’s always a good idea. I’ve had Japanese and Chinese food before, but when Malai first opened in Southlake I had never tried Thai food. I had heard good things about it so I figured I’d give it a chance. I was pleasantly surprised at how good the food is. Long story short, Malai is now one of my favorite Asian restaurants. I really love how fresh the food is, and it’s pretty healthy too! Two weekends ago I got to go with Natalie and Jamie to the restaurant to enjoy some of food together. I’ve tried a few of the entrees on the menu before, and although they’re all fantastic, the chicken and broccoli is my favorite. We all know the wonderful feeling of true happiness we get inside when the waiter brings out your long awaited food and everything is gumdrops and roses for those moments to when you take your first bite of bliss. It was just like that, but times three or four. And really, the wait wasn’t that long either. The bowl was huge, and they did a great job of making it look pretty. Like Natalie, I also love spicy food, so I used the sriracha to mix in with my food too. It consisted of broccoli, sauce, chicken, noodles, and a few grape tomatoes, and of course, chopsticks were used. It tasted perfect and it was also super filling so I was able to bring home some leftovers. I would suggest going to Malai and getting chicken and broccoli to everyone, it won’t disappoint.

After we finished our main course, Cindy suggested we try the peanut-Chili-Chocolate Roti dessert. It consisted of three fried scone looking triangles with a dark chocolate filling. We thought the  dessert would have a sweet chocolate flavor, but instead the peanut overpowered the chocolate creating a salty flavor. The dish came with 2 sauces, one tasting like vanilla ice cream, and the other like a fresh blueberry jam. Overall, we really enjoyed our entree along with the sauces, but didn’t think to highly of the spring rolls, and dessert.