Thursday, September 22, 2011

Roat Osha – Minneapolis, MN

D.Rough called me up to do lunch, and I absolutely love it when she does this! She was in my neck of the woods, so we decided to do sushi. However, when we got to one of our favorite places, it was closed for lunch and not opening up until 3. We went down the street to Roat Osha – it’s a decent Thai place that I’ve had good luck at, in the past.

The inside of this place is pretty nice. Modern, clean lines, pretty decorations and sculptures. Don’t let that alarm you, though. They do have some pretty decent lunch specials, including a handful of appetizers (all of which are fried).

We got an order of Basil Shrimp Rolls to start with. They sounded delicious. D.Rough ordered the Egg Noodle Curry (after serious deliberation on about three things). And I got the Sweet Cashew Delight. We ordered both of our entrees a level three out of five for spice. Just to be safe.

The food takes a little longer than a “quick” lunch allows, but I didn’t stress about it. Not THAT much, anyway. The appetizer came out first. It looked really good. The rolls were fried crispy rice paper skins around a piece of shrimp and some Thai basil. Then it has three delicious dipping sauces for you – honey lime peanut sauce, a spicy sweet and sour sauce with sri racha on top, and a sweet garlic sauce. You grab the shrimp by the tail and dig into the sauces. They were all delicious. The fried rolls were greasier than we even expected, but the dipping sauce masked the grease flavor and made these things really quite good. We finished the Basil Shrimp Rolls off without any problems. And then we sat and argued over which sauce was better.

Then, the entrees came out. D.Rough’s Egg Noodle Curry arrived with all kinds of fried egg noodles on the top – hence the name. The egg noodles made the dish difficult to eat, so you really have to crush these things up with a spoon or fork until they’re more bite-sized. Flavor-wise, this was a really excellent curry. There wasn’t much heat (should have gone with a level-four), but the flavor and the vegetables were great. The great part about this dish is it comes with potatoes and yams – I’ve never had yams in Thai food before, but I’m a huge fan now. Excellent dish, once you break up the crispy parts so you can eat it.

The Sweet Cashew Delight was also much better than I expected it to be. It is a large platter of stir fried chicken with Thai chilies, basil, green beans, red peppers, onions, zucchini, all mixed in with a delicious spicy sweet curry. I picked out all the onions first, and dug into the chicken. Very high-quality meat that went really well with the spicy sweet curry (again, not spicy enough – I’m thinking you really need to start at level-four here). The vegetables were cooked well and not floppy. And once I was done with most of the food, I dumped the remainder of my rice onto the curry sauce-filled plate and soaked up all the flavor into the rice. That’s how you do it.

This was one of my better meals here. Great flavor, if you don’t mind the longer lunch wait. The place does good business at lunch, but it wasn’t packed or anything. This just isn’t a fast turnaround kind of place. Maybe I was more sensitive to it since we missed out on our sushi and I was headed back to Eden Prairie after lunch.

Top 5 things about Roat Osha
1. Sweet Cashew Delight (and not just because it sounds dirty)
2. Egg Noodle Curry
3. Shrimp Basil Rolls
4. The décor is really nice - honestly
5. Really nice server

Bottom 5 thing
1. A little slow for the lunch hour
2. Spice level seemed Minnesota-biased (meaning very mild)
3. All of the lunch special appetizers are fried – this might be an issue if you’re watching what you eat
4. I’m always too damn full after I eat here to go to Sebastian Joe’s Ice Cream shop on the way home!
5. The ass-clowns that drive in uptown during the lunch hours are going to kill someone. My blood pressure was sky high by the time I got to the parking lot

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