Review: Samui Island

April 8, 2010

Samui Island “Authentic” Thai Cuisine now resides where Phoenix Noodle Cafe once was on Peachtree Parkway. It’s a rather weird shopping center, as most everything back there is hidden beyond fast food restaurants if you’re coming from the south. The interior is rather bland, although the handpainted beach mural on the wall is a rather nice touch.
In any case, I’d rather take the real island.

The positive: The Thai Iced Tea comes in a great big wine glass of deliciousness.

However, I have no interest in ever going back here. I don’t care how ~authentic~ you want to claim to be, there are certain restaurant pet peeves I have, and this place is lucky I didn’t just walk out (and they can thank hockey watching for taking away most of my aggression).
I like my food spicy. I have a decent variety of ways to spice up food, and only once has a restaurant made some food too spicy for me to handle. I like when my food comes with just a little touch of pain, and because I’m so used to spicy food, very rarely does any restaurant actually accomplish that feat.
I’m used to the whole little talk with a server regarding a dish being spicy. Yes…I know…you’re dumbing it down for the masses of people who find run-of-the-mill tikka masala and mild hot wings spicy. But at Samui Island, I did not get this normal talk.
Instead, the woman who I’m guessing is the owner is arguing with me about how I cannot order Thai hot because I have never eaten at the restaurant before.
It took all the power I had to not just yell, “Umm…WHAT?” at her. If I wasn’t absolutely in the mood for some iced tea, we would have been out of there faster than Kimi Raikkonen going to get some ice cream in Malaysia.
It is not MY problem that other people who ate at your restaurant were not able to eat something “Thai hot” and as far as I’m concerned, you DAMN WELL cannot go about telling your customers that they can’t order a certain spice level if you’d like them to come back.
I didn’t really argue with her, but after a couple minutes of just saying that I know what spicy food I can handle, and I would like to order it as hot as I want, she finally, to put it bluntly, shut up.
And guess what? It wasn’t that spicy. Joe even asked her to make his Panang curry even spicier, possibly out of spite, but in any case…Thai hot was of course not spicy.
If I’m over in Thailand, sure, you’ll talk me out of it no problem. But in the United States, if you’re going to try to tell me something is very very spicy, I know you’re full of garbage.

Also, the noodles weren’t anything I’d really write home about. It was just an average pad kee mao dish, everything was there…
Everything but some real heat, like I was apparently supposed to expect.

Samui Island Authentic Thai Cuisine on Urbanspoon