Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Wild Ginger - Atlanta

With my trips to Atlanta nearing a monthly consistency, one would think that I have cultivated a long list of eateries that I would like to visit. While that is true in some respects, where I choose to eat is usually the result of a group consensus, a coupon, or sheer convenience. It’s that last situation that led me, Jennifer, and Aaron to Wild Ginger.

After a delightful Thanksgiving in Jackson, Jennifer and I were back in Atlanta and hoping to find something for dinner. Even though Atlanta has a metro population more than quadrupling that of Jackson, it’s still a bit of a challenge finding something decent to eat late on a Sunday night. In an effort to find something open and to further her collection of points, Jennifer turned to Open Table where she ran across a Thai restaurant named Wild Ginger. Located next to the 285 perimeter, it seemed like a viable option. With only the opinion of Food Near Snellville to go on, the three of us descended on the visually unassuming Wild Ginger.

While we were deciding what to order, Wild Ginger provided a complimentary bowl of shrimp chips.
I’m not sure why they did this because this basket was inhaled by the three of us. They took up valuable space that could have been later occupied by menu items.

Soon enough, the appetizers began rolling in, starting with the Nuer Daad Daew or Thai Beef Jerky.
The last time I saw this on a Thai menu was at Lotus of Siam in Las Vegas.
It’s everything I love about Thai food condensed into jerky form. Each piece was dry, stringy and overloaded with ginger, garlic, and a fine helping of salt. Combined with the moderately spicy hot sauce, this jerky was addictive.

With multiple rolls on the menu, it should come as no surprise that we ordered a few different types. First was the Wild Ginger Thai Curry Roll.
Surrounded by a crispy skin, the interior was full of cabbage and a pleasant curry flavor.
The shrimp really took a back seat in this roll.

The classic Thai Spring Roll was the second of the pair.
Filled with chicken, glass noodles, carrot, and celery, it was your classic spring roll.
Unlike the shrimp in the Thai Curry Roll, the chicken actually have a major role in the taste of this spring roll.

Our last appetizer was one I don’t normally associate with Thai menus.
Pork and vegetable pot stickers, they’re always welcome, even in a Thai restaurant.
Filled with plenty of garlic and basil, these were a fitting end to the appetizers.

Recently I’ve become quite enamored with the Thai condiment of prik nam pla or nam prik pla, so I was curious to see how Wild Ginger made theirs.
They certainly had the spiciness down to a science. A little taste of this sauce was a mixture of spice, salinity, and just a subtle pungency from the fish sauce.

The first entrée to the table was Pad Thai.
While I enjoy Pad Thai, it’s a particular favorite of Aaron and it was a good sign when this dish was up to his expectations. I was a fan of the tamarind flavor but disappointed in the components of the dish. The shrimp and chicken were nice, but where was the tofu, dried shrimp, or ground nuts?

Pork Pad Prik Khing was our next entrée.
The long beans and peppers were a very nice feature of the dish. With plenty of pork, vegetables, and a very nice sauce, this was an all around pleasant dish.

A consistent member of any Thai menu, an order of chicken Larb also made an appearance.
This was everything you could want in an order of larb. Each bite was juicy, meaty, and a satisfying mixture of peppers, limes, and salt.

While I may not have been suffering the pains of 285 traffic like Food Near Snellville, I was equally as pleased with the food at Wild Ginger. The wait staff was friendly and helpful and their offerings were quite tasty. One thing I found refreshing about Wild Ginger was the originality of the menu. It seems like almost every Thai place in Atlanta shares the same menu; the same dishes, the same design, the same odd sushi portion, all just arranged slightly differently. That uniformity leaves Wild Ginger with a bit of an edge on the competition, at least in my book. Even without the differences in menus, Wild Ginger was an excellent choice for dinner and one I'll keep in mind next time I make a late arrival into Atlanta.

Wild Ginger Address & Information
2201 Savoy Drive, Atlanta, GA 30341 // 770.451.3880 // Wild Ginger Website // Wild Ginger Menu
Wild Ginger Thai Cuisine on Urbanspoon

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