Chedi Thai Bistro‘s lunch deals and Happy Hours are becoming famous throughout La Jolla for both their fantastic quality and economic prices. We visited this family-owned La Jolla Thai restaurant to see what the hype was about and were not disappointed.
Located in the heart of downtown La Jolla (at 737 Pearl Street #110, between Draper Ave and Eads Ave,) Chedi Thai Bistro is just a quick walk away from many hotels and businesses. Their mission? To cook Thai food “as elegant and genuine as it’s meant to be” for the La Jolla community.
Chedi opened in 2010 and is constantly evolving and expanding. Happy Hour (5 – 7 pm) is a recent addition, and we’re thankful for it! Quality wines are just $5 a glass during happy hour (usually $8 – $9) and hot and cold sakes and cocktails are available from their attractive bar.
Another new development for Chedi Thai Bistro is a takeout menu! Delivery is very affordable and especially popular during finals week at UCSD.
Though the Happy Hour may be new, some of Chedi’s classics are going strong as ever: their delicious and filling Prix Fixe lunch deal gives you two courses (appetizer with 2 choices and a main course) for $10, an amazing deal considering the high quality of the food.
The lunch, Happy Hour, special and dinner menus (find them on the Chedi Thai Bistro website here) are constantly updated based on customer preferences. “If people like it, we add it,” says co-owner Tom. It’s certainly true, as the popular Chicken Satay and Summer Roll were just added to the Happy Hour menu. Many will be happy to hear that the menu is vegetarian friendly.
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We sat down and looked over the menu with Tom, who pointed out some customer favorites and dishes unique to Chedi Thai Bistro, like the vegetable dumplings and the crab curry (on the special menu).
We were then quickly brought Thai iced tea, Thai iced coffee (new to me, but fantastic!) and another iced tea. The Thai iced coffee, like the Thai iced tea, had half-and-half in it and a rich body and depth from infused cardamom. The other iced tea was cool and refreshing with a light but complex taste.
We were also treated to the tofu summer roll, vegetable dumplings, and shrimp lemongrass soup (see dumplings, soup in article image) for starters. Each were unique: the summer roll was cool and crunchy, with a surprising freshness from slivers of avocado inside. The vegetable dumplings were both chewy and crunchy, sweet and savory. If you like bold flavors, the shrimp lemongrass soup would be a good fit for you, as the salty tanginess shines through.
The meal continued with a green papaya salad, Pad See Ew, pan-seared atlantic salmon, and the grilled pork chop (lunch version). The green papaya salad (see above) was tender and crisp, and Chedi Thai Bistro is the only place I’ve ever eaten this dish and been able to taste the delicate flavor of the papaya.
Next was the grilled pork chop from the lunch menu, which is a sizeable portion and just one of the main course options for the lunch combo.
“We have a son and father come here for lunch and share [the pork chop] regularly,” said Tom. “Our food is not teeny-tiny food, but something filling.” It’s easy to see why it’s such a hit; the pork is fabulously cooked and juicy with a sweet and tangy melt-in-your-mouth glaze.
Lastly, the pan-seared salmon (below) was a group favorite with its crisp top and flaky texture, though the fish was in fierce competition with the snowpeas underneath it. A sweet soy glaze brought it all together.
You can create your own food adventure at Chedi Thai Bistro at 737 Pearl Street #110, between Draper Ave and Eads Ave. Their varied menu has options everyone will love!
[Our meal was provided gratis, courtesy of Chedi Thai.]
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