Overall rating: 4 out of 5. FOOD: 4 / 5. VALUE: 3.5 / 5. AMBIANCE: 4 / 5
At Juree’s Thai Place, the service is personal, the food is fragrant and the atmosphere is zen-like.
The beautifully decorated restaurant on 16th Avenue fills the void of a former Burger King and gives diners the royal treatment. Read my Lunch Rush column in Metro Calgary or continue reading for the expanded version…
We shared a Tom Khaa Kai Soup ($8) with coconut milk, chicken and mushrooms. The tangy soup flavoured with kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass and galangal left a slightly pasty residue on the palate. Also, I found the small bits of lemongrass (which has a tough texture) difficult to manage. I’m particularly picky with this soup because I make a kick ass version of it that is bold yet complex. Here, it tasted predominantly of coconut milk and fish sauce.
We continued with the Matsaman Curry with beef ($14). The creamy curry with coconut milk, potato, onions and peanuts featured a nice, smooth consistency and a pleasant nuttiness. The earthy, complex flavours were spot on, complementing the fluffy coconut rice well (large, $6). The coconut rice actually tastes like coconut (big ups).
We ended with Pad Thai ($13), a staple noodle dish. The mild, smooth rice noodles with pork, prawn, tofu and bean sprouts boasted sweet tones (soy, brown sugar, tamarind). I’ve never eaten sweet pad thai and although I prefer a bit more heat, spice-wise, I loved the glossy but not too oily texture of the noodles.
If you’re looking for extremely spicy Thai food, you should make this explicit to your server as all of the dishes we tried were surprisingly mild. Although it’s not cheap-cheap for the quantity of food you get (as Thai food in Calgary never is), Juree’s offers a relaxed setting and delicious meal out.
Just be careful if you have an incredibly adorable baby like my friend Colleen does. If you do, the owner Juree might get handsy with lil’ Bob or Sue. (Sidebar: To deter well-meaning folks from touching those baby cheeks, have baby wear a full-face helmet or give the touch-er a dirty glare/hiss combo. Don’t smile on the outside and be passive-aggressive like we were).
Juree’s Thai Place, 2055 16 Avenue N.W., Calgary. Phone: 403-264-6477
Hours of operation: Monday to Thursday 11:00 am to 10:00 pm; Friday & Saturday 11:00 am to 11:00 pm; Sunday 11:00 am to 10:00 pm
Price range (for lunch): ($12 to $18)
Low: ($12 vegetarian fried noodles)
High: ($18 Juree’s Thai Place special, fish with tamarind sauce)
Is this restaurant appropriate for:
Client negotiations: Yes
Lunch with co-workers: Yes
Social lunch: Yes
Quick solo lunch: Yes
Time in: 12:40 p.m
Time out: 2:00 p.m