Best Phad Thai in Bend Oregon

2006/08/19

I started the week off with getting some Toomies to-go and made some negative comments about their Phad Thai. Then the wife picked up some Taste of Thai so I got the chance to try their Phad Thai out. After having both of those, my pallet needed to get back to square one so I went back to SOBA to get some of the good stuff.

It is my opinion that SOBA has the Best Phad Thai in Bend.

Yes, that is a recycled photo from my last SOBA review. I recycled because their Phad Thai is so consistent that another picture would have just looked the same…plus I’m lazy.

So I started wondering why I liked their Phad Thai so much and also if it’s really what traditional Phad Thai is supposed to be. I mean, look at Toomies:

And take a look at Taste of Thai’s:

If both of these are redish orange, how come SOBA’s is more of a light brown? I have a myspace page just for Bend Oregon Restaurants as well as a myspace group where users can discuss Bend Oregon Restaurants. So far, the only restaurant owner I have been able to find on there has been the owner of SOBA. I was able to email him through myspace and asked him if he can explain the difference. Here’s what he had to say:

“…Phad Thai is not RED in Thailand…what happened?? …most restaurants like to buy already made Phad Thai sauces that have coloring in it so to make it more appealing for people to buy it….and the people that do make them in the USA like to put ketchup in to get that tangy yet sweet taste.”

He also directed me to the Kung Fu Chef who says:

“If you order phad thai and it’s bright red, send it back. It’s made with ketchup; red pad thai is an abomination against nature. Ketchup has no place in phad thai. What’s going on there is a great story and has to do with westernizing an ingredient: Kecap originated someplace in southeast Asia. Apparently when the Europeans took kecap back to Europe, they introduced tomatoes into it and renamed it “ketchup”. So when the first phad thai was being made here, it’s easy to imagine someone thinking “Kecap, ketchup, whatever. It’s gotta be the same thing!” Ironically, yes the name is the same, but the ingredients are way off! So in a sense, true phad thai probably was made with kecap, just not the red Italian version.”

SOBA also let me know that they make all of their sauces from scratch, everything from Teriyaki to Phad Thai and all made by the same chef which makes their meals so consistent.

So, I have tried the three places I know of in Bend where you can get some Phad Thai and until someone tells me of a different option that I have not tried, I will stand by my statement that SOBA has the best Phad Thai in Bend, Oregon.

Review of SOBA’s Phad Thai and Tonkatsu

SOBA Asian Bistro
945 NW Bond Street
Bend, OR 97701
Ph: 541.318.1535

http://www.eatsoba.com/

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