True Thai Food: Sripraphai
Sripraphai in Woodside, Queens could be the best Thai food in New York City. And I’ve eaten a lot of Thai food through the years. At Sri Pra Phai, named after the owner, you’ll find Thais dining in, as well as countless other ethnicities within the melting pot that hugs Roosevelt avenue. You’ll find a huge menu with colorful pictures with descriptions in Thai and English containing a full selection of authentic Thai dishes. This isn’t fusion; this isn’t cookie-cutter, lunch special 1-2-3 Thai. It’s the real deal.
Besides authenticity, they have a full vegetarian menu. And after an all day trip to the American Museum of Natural History with a hundred kids, I needed a huge dinner. Luckily my friend lives in the area and supplemented the delicious meal with in depth analysis on the Kubrick/Illuminati conspiracy theory. For an appetizer I got the fried shredded tarot and peanut with a sweet chili dipping sauce. The little birds nest-looking fried delights were wonderful.
For an entree, a medley of heat, sweetness and salty: a spicy shredded papaya, utterly divine coconut rice and a pile of sauteed mushrooms-accompanied by that succulently sweet chili sauce. It was a well balanced plate and perfect for the diner who plans to order dessert. The papaya salad was sinus-clearing hot at “medium spice.”
Time for dessert. My favorite: kow dom mat! Though they had a slew of coconut milk sweet bites just like I ate for weeks in Thailand, I knew it was the banana staple that I had to have. Remember that cooked banana turns pink! How pretty.