$13 at Goldenroom Thai Restaurant

Where: Goldenroom Thai Restaurant, 1209 Montrose, 713-524-9614

What $13 gets you: A phat pad Thai, egg roll/spring roll and soup of the day.

First things first: No matter what Google might say, the restaurant’s Web site isn’t www.thegoldenroom.com. No, that’s the site for a Canada-based “global healing facility” where you can heal your sexuality. They’re sure they can assist your body “to merge more fully with your spirit,” but that costs way more than $13 and might involve a lot of bending. The real Web site is www.goldenroomrestaurant.com, but besides the awkward grammar, it’s of no use. Here’s all you need to know: Go there and get you a pad Thai lunch special for $7.95, which includes a cup of the soup of the day and an egg roll or spring roll. The portions are generous, and, since I just drank water, my bill was $8.60 with tax. Feeling generous, I tipped $3, for a total of $11.60. (Dinner is a different story, with entrees running from around $9.95 to $16.95, too much for this experiment.)

Recommended? Absolutely. I knew I was in the right place when I saw two orange-robed monks chowing down at one of the tables. Since these are dudes who devote their lives to tranquility and nirvana and whatnot, I figure they wouldn’t eat at some crappy restaurant. And I was right. The soup of the day was egg drop soup, which was good but unremarkable, as is generally the case with egg drop soup. The real fun came with the delicious chicken pad Thai. And the egg roll? I will be dreaming about that egg roll for years to come.

From outside, the restaurant looks like a warm, inviting bungalow. And the ambiance inside is great – clean, laid-back, and well-adorned with some nice small statues and a ginormous golden chandelier. Oh, and the service is fantastic. And as previously mentioned, the portions are substantial, and as proof, we’re including this photo of the leftovers.

Bonus point: You might run into some monks. – Craig Malisow


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