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Restaurant Review: Siam House

Posted Jul 13 2009 11:40pm

Siam House
430 E. 4th St.
Bloomington, IN
(812) 331-1233

Location: Corner of 4th and Dunn
Cuisine: Southeast Asian
Price: About $15 for an Entree, $5-10 for an Appetizer

Last Friday I had to prepare our month end financials by the end of the day, so that meant coming in really early and staying late. I was not in the mood to cook, so we decided to go out. I knew I wanted to eat outside, so I told JJ we should park the car and walk around downtown until I found somewhere we hadn't been that had outside seating.

My co-workers had told me I should try Siam House because they'd been there a few times and love the lunch buffet, so we decided to give it a try. JJ wasn't so sure he wanted to go because he's not a big fan of Chinese food, but I saw there were curries and some Thai inspired food, so he agreed.

The atmosphere outside is wonderful, the patio is behind a white picket fence with ivy vines and tons of pretty yet eclectic garden decorations. It was like a secret garden with the bumpy brick floor and the overgrown, lush greenery. It was exactly the atmosphere I was looking for after spending a long day in the office staring at the computer.

We looked over the menu for quite some time. They have so many varities of stir frys, curries, barbeque, noodles, rice dishes, and appetizers.
We decided to order wonton soup while we looked over the menu. The soup came out in a large pot to serve family style. It was the most delicious and original wonton soup I'd ever seen. The wontons were definitely hand made, they looked like purses, filled with ground pork and shrip. Then simmered in the broth were baby bok choy halves, bean sprouts and whole stems of cilantro. The vegetables gave the soup such delicious flavor, and added substance, which wonton soup is often lacking.

The Siam House recommends, like many Asian restaurants, to order a few different style dishes and eat family style. Since only JJ and I were there, he ordered a curry and I ordered a stir fry.
JJ decided he'd order a curry for us to share. We're both partial to red curry, so he ordered Gang Dang with Chicken, a red curry simmered with coconut milk, bamboo shoots, carrots, zucchini, green beans, eggplant and basil leaves. On a scale of 1-5 of heat level, he ordered a 3. I thought it could have used a bit more spice, but since it wasn't terribly spicy, the flavor of the curry was very strong. It was sweet from the basil, with hints of spice. It was brothy, which was great because it was served over rice and the rice really soaked up the curry.
I ordered a stir fry, Pad Tour Lun Tao with Tofu, which had snap peas, water chestnuts, broccoli, baby corn, carrots and onions in a garlic soy sauce. I ordered my spice level at a 4. My dish was much spicier than JJ's curry, which was nice because it really brightened up the vegetables and tofu. This dish was very similar in taste to Tofu in Garlic Sauce that any generic Chinese Food Restaurant would serve. I chose this dish because it had some of my favorite vegetables - snap peas, baby corn and water chestnuts.

I think the food at Siam House was great, but at the same time the entrees weren't anything that unusual. If I were to go back, it would definitely be for the wonton soup! Though there were a few other dishes I'd love to try with Pumpkin and Eggplant, and I wish I hadn't played it safe with something I knew I'd like.

If you'd like to try a curry similar to what we had at Siam House, check out this recipe! For a basic wonton soup recipe, check this out. I'm definitely going to try it out again with the cilantro, bean sprout and boy choy additions!
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