Greeshma likes Watana because it has an incredible dish that she has never seen on any other Thai menu: "fresh young coconut green curry." Greeshma describes it as green curry with actual pieces of young coconut AND on top of that, it is served in the coconut shell. If you weren't impressed with the pieces of coconut meat, I know for sure you're impressed by the choice of presentation.
So of course, we tried to order it, but in the continuation that will be the theme of Greeshma's life: they did not have anymore coconut that night. So we scrambled to select other dishes from the menu.
And this was what we got:
$2 Thai iced teas - solid.
Chinese broccoli - Greeshma says she would be happy just eating a bowl of this as an entree. (I know, boring!) The broccoli was well prepared though: crisp, fresh and not too overwhelmed by the sauce.
The Som Tum, green papaya salad with tomatoes, string beans and peanuts in lime juice dressing. (I did not eat this because I am a serious papaya unfan.)
The scallion pancake - served much differently than the Chinese version; this one was served as thick, triangular chunks of fried, scallion mass.
We were pleasantly surprised how delicious these were. Not too oily, crunchy but soft, hot and totally chivalicious on the inside. I ate a dozen pieces by myself.
Greeshma's entree. I have no idea what this was called, so I am going to guess it is the Goong Pad Puk until she corrects me. Shrimp in a light sauce with lots and lots of vegetables.
I ordered the Goong Choo Chee. It was the only menu item that had two chili peppers and was described as shrimp in Thai style curry. It was served on a bed of shredded iceberg lettuce that I could have lived without.
I tried to get the waiter to explain what "Thai style curry" was because, one would hope, all of their curries would be cooked "Thai style." He described it as similar to panang, which I also have not had. So I am going to describe it as red coconut curry. The coconut flavors were really strong, and it was only mildly spicy (definitely not two pepper worthy). Still worth ordering though, as I found the sauce rather tasty.
The Watana gang bid adieu to our Greeshma !
After we left Watana, Greeshma had the brilliant idea of grabbing dessert, so we walked several blocks up 7th Avenue to the Cocoa Bar.
I've been to the Cocoa Bar in Manhattan once before, ordered a hot chocolate, and was completely underwhelmed by the taste. This time though, things looked different, because I actually saw their amazing desserts behind the display case:
Triple chocolate mousse
The mysterious gianduja
Looking at this made me relate to how guys must feel when they see a hot girl from behind. You want the girl to turn around so you can see if the front matches the back. I was dying to know what this "peanut butter explosion" cake looked like, because the backside looked totally worth it, but it was impossible to tell from the pie's positioning in the case. (I apologize if I sound like a total perv here, but peanut butter desserts drive me wild.)
After much deliberation on their dessert menu, we finally decided on our nightcap treats. I felt nervous ordering the peanut butter pie because it was located in the vegan part of the menu, and truthfully, I've had the worst luck with vegan pastries, but the most adorable and tiny waitress reassured me that it would not "taste vegan" so I decided to go ahead and order it.
The iced cinnamon hot chocolate. Sounded amazing in theory, but the execution was poor. I could hardly taste the chocolate or the cinnamon. I would skip this.
The Gianduja, the adorably tiny waitress's favorite: essentially hazelnut chocolate cake surrounded by crushed pralines. The plate had beautiful chocolate drizzles.
Follow that chocolate river to the most amazing peanut butter explosion cake.
The peanut butter mousse was light and airy but amazingly full of peanut butter flavor.
The saltiness from the peanut butter mousse paired well with the seriously moist, decadent chocolate cake. I also really liked the thin chocolate layer coating the mousse. This totally has opened my eyes to the possibilities of vegan desserts!
And that my friends, is it for Greeshma and my regular escapades ! I am sure she will be back for later adventures, but until then, it's been a wild and gluttonous ride (and I wouldn't have had it any other way!).
Good luck in Philly, Greeshma!
420 7th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11215-7317
228 7th Avenue, Brooklyn
(also have a location in LES, Manhattan)