The chefs at Breeze combine traditional Thai flavors with refined French techniques, crafting a menu that Dana Bowen from the New York Times called "a quilt of influences" in 2005. After settling in at the wooden tables that line Breeze's vibrantly orange wall, diners can indulge in succulent platefuls of duck, seafood, or tofu. Customers may dictate the intensity of their entrees' spiciness and order mild-tasting meals or dishes that are hot enough to smelt a handful of paper clips. In addition to the Thai culinary classics that fill the menu, Breeze also offers nontraditional items, including house-ground hamburgers and roasted-butternut-squash ravioli with a gingered carrot relish. Bar seating allows patrons to keep their whistles wet enough to carry on nonstop conversations with the eatery's several hanging televisions.
Ceetay's elegantly plated meals of grilled seafood, garlicky fried rice, and tender noodles tossed with colorful veggies tastefully blend the culinary influences of Japan, China, Thailand, and the United States. Like Bruce Springsteen lyrics embroidered onto a wool sweater, the interior evokes a post-industrial mystique that's strangely charming and cozy, with warm light from mason-jar chandeliers bathing small tables surrounded by walls clad in Chinese newsprint. Two small open kitchens allow patrons to watch chefs prepare meals of maple-kissed beef, soba-noodle stir-fry, or hazelnut crème brûlée. Interesting ingredients such as sea urchin, crispy salmon skin, and wagyu beef infuse sushi rolls with rich flavors and textures, and frosty Japanese beers and European and American wines offer suitable complements no matter the diner's dinner selection.
Long, colorful booths unite dining parties at Heng 2 Thai Bistro, accentuated by an expansive wall-size print of an Asian street scene and filled with the scents of traditional Thai ingredients. Steaming beside menu starters of satay and spring rolls, vegetarian entrees sample a rabbit’s shopping basket for garden-fresh ingredients such as eggplant, broccoli, and string beans. Meaty entrees are categorized by preparations, such as sautéed and curry, and summon patrons to choose from more than 10 proteins, which run the gamut from chicken to squid knee. After plates are cleaned of basil- or ginger-infused bites, desserts such as fried ice cream offer patrons a blast of hot and cold without requiring them to ski into an active volcano.
Lantern Thai crafts inventive and authentic Thai dishes, each elegantly arranged on crisp geometric plates, inside a cinnamon-hued space. Beneath circular chandeliers reminiscent of medieval candelabras, appetizers rejoin ingredients in tasty combinations such as the Lantern’s Angel’s shrimp fried in a coating of crispy angel-hair noodles served with honey-chili dipping sauce. A rainbow of curries sinks beef, chicken, and shrimp into vibrant broths flavored with complex spice blends, and iconic Thai dishes marry noodles and fried rice to bell peppers, pineapple, and meats or veggies. The lengthy drink menu includes three types of saki, lychee-spiked mimosas and mojitos, draft beer, and wine to wet whistles or grease bike chains in a pinch.
“Some New York restaurants hide behind unmarked entrances and velvet ropes. Laut hides behind its menu: a pan-Asian thicket of sushi, Thai soups and Chinese noodles,” said Julia Moskin of the New York Times. While the menu might be robust enough to provide shelter during hide-and-seek, the restaurant doesn't sacrifice quality for quantity, as the Asian fusion cuisine has garnered a Michelin star.
The food owes its authentic flavor to the owners, Malaysian natives Kathy Wong and Michael Bong, whose generations-old Malaysian recipes sing a culinary siren song to both city natives and tourists. The couple's kitchen staff only works with fresh ingredients, which go into the restaurant's signature sauces and flavor-infusions, including sweet chili sauce, tamarind dressing, and coconut rice. The eatery also houses a sushi bar, where the chefs do more rolling than an inner tube dropped from the top of Mount Everest. Its ample options and welcoming dining room make Laut “well worth a visit,” says Moskin.
As salty breezes blow in from the ocean and Jamaica Bay, they intermingle with the scents of contemporary Thai cuisine on the outdoor deck at Thai Rock. Specialties include the Poh Taek, a hot-and-sour hot pot filled with a combination of shrimp, mussels, squid, and whitefish. Chefs also stir-fry rice noodles with egg and dark, sweet soy sauce to create pad see-ew, available with a choice of protein such as chicken, certified Angus beef, pork, duck, or tofu.
As far as party spots go, Thai Rock lives up to its name. Live music rocks the indoor dining room year round, while tunes echo onto the outdoor deck and bar during warmer months. The eatery frequently hosts events, from karaoke contests to outdoor Zumba classes on the deck. The deck, with its panoramic view of?and direct access to?Jamaica Bay, is definitely a highlight of Thai Rock, allowing for warm-weather fun including pre-dinner jet skiing thanks to Rockaway Jet Ski at Thai Rock.