Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Silk Elephant

Sunday night was Birthday Dinner #2: dinner with SP's family at a restaurant of my choosing. For my last 2 birthdays, I chose The Cheesecake Factory, but this year I felt like doing something different. Plus, I wasn't really up for the long wait time at TCF and I suspect that SP's family doesn't enjoy TCF all that much. I do know that his family likes Thai/Chinese/Indian food a lot, not my favorite cuisines, but there is a Thai place that I do enjoy: Silk Elephant in Squirrel Hill. I like it for the 'fusion' Thai tapas. SP likes it for the 'real' Thai food, specifically stinky, spicy Thai food. That means it's a Thai place that we both can enjoy.

So I chose Silk Elephant. My other reason for choosing Silk Elephant: it's a few blocks away from Te Cafe!

Around 5:30 pm we met up with everyone and gathered around a large table for some yummy food. I don't think anyone made reservations or called ahead, but they were able to seat our group of 8 adults and 2 children right away.

I had my usual 'meal' of 4 tapas.

Silk Elephant Rice Wrappers:Cucumber, carrot, lettuce, cream cheese, and crabmeat in a rice wrapper served with a sweet chili sauce. I love these. I let SP have one because he likes them, too.
Pork & Chicken Dumplings with a ginger sesame soy sauce:Thai Crab Crowns (crab and cream cheese wrapped in a wonton and deep fried):And Shrimp & Pork Toast (deep fried squares of herbal shrimp and ground pork): And as usual, I enjoyed them all.

I was at the end of the table with SP & Googer, so I only took photos of their food and I have no idea what anyone else ordered. I couldn't even see the other end of the table! Googer started off with Tom Kah soup:Coconut broth simmered with galanga, accented with roasted chili peppers and lime juice. He really enjoyed it. It has 2 ingredients I don't like: coconut and chili!

Googer & SP got the same meal: Wild Curry. It's crushed fresh chili with green bean, eggplant, bamboo shoot, mushrooms, and Thai fresh herbs. Googer got his with shrimp and a level 10 spiciness:He loves his food spicy. The spicier the better. He really enjoyed it.

SP got his with mixed seafood and a level 7 spiciness:He enjoyed this but I think it was a bit too spicy for him. His eyes were watering a bit and he was chugging many glasses of water. Good thing the servers are very attentive & prompt at refilling waters!

They both also got brown rice as a side with their meal:Everyone said they enjoyed it. I'm not sure about our 2 year old nephew. He didn't seem to be having much fun! We always find the service at Silk Elephant to be fine. Not overly friendly, but not distant. Prompt. Helpful. Attentive.

After dinner, SP & I went to Te Cafe and sat around and talked for a while as we enjoyed tea. I chose a Vanilla Cinnamon tea which I really, really liked, to my surprise, as I usually don't like vanilla flavored teas. SP had a green tea which he enjoyed. We also bought some Orange Spice & Lemon Spice teas to replenish our containers of those teas.

A very nice Birthday Dinner #2 with family.

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