April 12, 2013

Gang Panaeng Curry at Rice Fine Thai Cuisine

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■■■■□ 3.8 / 5 “Great curry, so-so tofu”

Even before I offered my thoughts on the Gang Panaeng curry at Rice, my friend mused, “you must have liked it, you practically licked the plate clean!”

My first impression of the curry was its great presentation. The brightness of the red-orange sauce, the swirls of coconut milk surrounding triangles of tofu and the decorative sprinkling of kaffir lime leaves all contributed to the curry’s appetizing appearance.

As far as taste was concerned, appearances were not deceiving. The sauce was rich and flavorful with a spicy kick. It wasn’t over-poweringly spicy, but still enough to be glad for the glass of cold water.

Other Asian restaurants in town seem to have the upper hand when it comes to the tofu. Rice’s tofu had a lower-quality taste, much like the cheaper variety you can buy at the grocery store. The powerful taste of the curry masked this problem slightly, but even so, I will probably order from one of the other available protein options (chicken, pork or beef) next time.

With a large side of steamed white rice, the portions were about right. The Gang Panaeng was $14.

Reviewed by Eric Barnes

Address: 140 East Main Street, Bozeman, MT 59715
Website: https://www.facebook.com/ricethaicuisine
Phone: 406-404-1196

Comments (19)

  1. April 20, 2013
    Craig D. said...

    I’m surprised we didn’t go here at the same time, Eric, but that’s probably for the best because I had much different experiences eating there. I’ve tried their panaeng curry twice, and both times it was pretty darn spicy! Like you said, enough to make you appreciate the cold water :)

    And your review of the tofu is spot-on – it’s nice to have it as an option but the texture and flavor are fairly mediocre.

    The thing that I found most unfortunate about Rice Fine Thai Cuisine was the painfully long wait times. I’m not exaggerating when I say that there are less than a dozen tables in the restaurant, but both times I went there for lunch, it took between 60-90 minutes from entrance to exit. I respect that food is cooked to order, but they need to make it more efficient somehow because at this point I’d only go back there if I were planning a loooong sit-down lunch.

    The curry was tasty though, definitely on par with the other top options in town. One noteworthy difference is that Lemongrass Thai or Sweet Chili Asian Bistro generally offer as much rice as you’d like to go with your curry (or with your leftovers), whereas Rice Fine Thai Cuisine capped me at the single scoop (unless I wanted to purchase extra rice). I’m not saying they should be giving away unlimited rice, but I was easily out of rice before I was half-way through my curry.

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