Chaba Thai in Roanoke
Is it Friday already? This first week of MoFo has really flown by, faster than usual, it feels like. To close out the first week, I’ll stay here in Roanoke and wrassle up some yummy vegan eats.
Chaba Thai is one of the restaurants I dearly love but always forget to eat at. It’s recently undergone a management switch recently and is back in the hands of the Thai Continental’s owners (or relatives of, I’m not sure what the story is), but the food has stayed delicious as usual.
The other week, G & I headed out to Chaba to grab a late dinner compliments of the buy-one-get-one coupon Chaba has in the International Dining Club subscription. While I normally don’t order alcohol at Thai restaurants, G introduced me to Chaba’s Thai Tiger, a vodka-based cocktail with lemongrass, hot thai peppers, lime, ginger, simple syrup and a few other ingredients that I don’t remember. It’s a fantastic drink, as long as you get plenty of muddled peppers, and one that we’ve both been dying to recreate at home (no recipes on the internet so we’re going to have to do it by taste tests, I guess).
Since we were starving, we ordered the spring rolls before the meal, and, while a spring roll is really just a spring roll, the ones at Chaba seem more veg-tastic than normal, with lots of carrots and cabbage, and the right amount of fried crunch to hit that fried-spring-roll-craving I get every few months or so.
The main course (for me) was the Tofu Pad Pak, a dish full of rice noodles, stir fried veggies and tofu, and a garlic sauce with plenty of heat. Chaba (and the sister restaurant, Thai Continental) do a great job of throwing tons of vegetables in the mix–shitake mushrooms, carrots, broccoli, celery, peppers, etc.–and after eating less than half of the bowl, I was stuffed. Thankfully, reheated Pad Pak makes a great lunch the next day (smile). As for the tofu, it was lightly fried to a nice chewy-crispy perfection, further adding to the overall Thai-comfort-food vibe of the dish.
While the meal was perfect (as it always is), we ended up with another downer at the end–Chaba, with it’s new management, decided not to honor our International Dining Club coupon, even though it didn’t expire until February 2012. This is the same issue we had with the German restaurant in Buchanan. When we handed the server our coupon, she told us that they just don’t take them any more but that she would take 50% off of an entree instead of the one entree being free. Even though we pointed out that they weren’t honoring a contract, she just said that’s what they could do and left it that. Needless to say, it put a bad taste in our mouth and I’m not sure I’ll be going back to Chaba any time soon, but it was what it was.
Our issue aside, Chaba does serve delicious Thai food–and there are plenty of vegan options which makes it all the better. Just be warned, if you’re a local, don’t use your Dining Club coupon there!
Chaba Thai Cuisine
3603 Franklin Rd
Roanoke, VA 24014