Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Thai Palace, Ennis: A Covert Veg Paradise

The Thai Palace brims with potential to become the most talked about restaurant for vegetarians in the county. It has what meat-snubbers look for in a dining experience: a menu loaded with cosmopolitan vegetables, spices, herbs and rarities like tofu. It’s a bonus that the place feels good too - thanks to a meditative Buddha watching from the wall. Quaint Asian ceramics and blooming orchids fill the restaurant with the sort of frills that making dining out the novelty it is.

But, there’s a but. And it’s not minor. The menu is far too modest. Not in a charming ‘I-don’t-like-to-boast’ kind of way, but in a ‘you’re-going-to-leave-here-without-knowing-we-have-wonderful-vegetarian-dishes-because-I’m-not-going-to-tell-you’ sort of way. The menu leaves no clue that the restaurant is a vegetarian’s oasis; a place where starters like vegetable tempuras and spring rolls rub shoulders with stuffed cucumber rolls on silver platters. Mains like butternut squash and tofu in red curry, broccoli and asparagus in soy sauce, and three mushroom stir-fries aren’t going to sell themselves. That’s the job of a menu. Why then, is it not doing it? The only reason the Clare Veg Group enjoyed such dishes was because we phoned and emailed in advance. We informed management we would need vegan-friendly dishes. It’d be just swell if we didn’t have to, every time.

My recommendation for this charming restaurant would be for it to demonstrate how wonderful its vegetarian menu is by listing non-meat dishes on its menu. It’s a small change, but one that would attract vegetarian customers in herds. 

Staff are excellent and more than accommodating. It’s a first class eatery, with all the tastes, flavours and textures the South East Asian country it takes its name from is famed for. 

No comments:

Post a Comment