When I first came to New York, I quickly found my favorite Thai food restaurant. It wasn't until I went to Uncle Boon's did I have to rearrange my list of favorites. Now, having gone to Uncle Boon's Sister, I have to rearrange that list AGAIN!
My first thought when I learned about Uncle Boon's Sister was that the menu would be somewhat similar to the flagship location, Uncle Boon's. Boy was I wrong. Everything about this location is completely different than its predecessor.
For starters, the space is a lot smaller seating only 8-10 people. It's fast casual, so they expect you to order, eat, and wrap it up. If you don't get there at a decent hour and snag a table, you will be forced to get your meal to-go. My boyfriend, Akuro, and I fortunately got there before the dinner rush so we were able to eat without being rushed. And just like Uncle Boon's, this place makes it difficult to capture quality photos of your meal from the warm dim lighting.
Since I always control what we eat when we go out I actually let Akuro take the reigns on this one, and maybe the fact that he's been here once already helped ease the control freak in me.
The first dish that came to the table was Laab, a Fried Chicken with Herb Salad, Toasted Rice Powder served with Sticky Rice. The dressing on the salad had a rice vinegar and cilantro base. It was served spicy and cold. The sticky rice was there to help cool your mouth with each bite. As you can see from the photo below, the chicken was fried to perfection; extra crispy with a tender and juicy middle.
Next we indulged in the Phat Thai (Pad Thai) with Prawns. Uncle Boon's Sister takes the title for My Favorite Pad Thai. Some food critics have gone on record saying that when they find a new Thai restaurant, they order the Pad Thai first as this gives them the best insight into how good a restaurant is. Uncle Boon's recipe gives you the right amount of fish sauce and peanut sauce so you don't get hit in the face with the oddly delicious fishy smell. The prawns were served with the heads still on, which I think made Akuro feel uncomfortable. However, you know they are perfect when the heads just slip right off and you're left with the firm but soft taste of delicious prawns. The only issue with this dish is that if you are sharing with someone, there is an uneven number of prawns. I was kind enough to give Akuro the last one in exchange for the last pieces of chicken from the Laab.
A fair arrangement I think.
In addition to the two main dishes, we also ordered the Mataba, a curried lamb pastry with a sweet after taste (top left corner). The pastry was so soft that you could easily forget that there was lamb in it. It served as a great buffer between the salty and spicy courses.
Lucky for us, after we scarfed down our meal, we were able to sit and relax for a second, unbutton our pants if need be and just revel in our satisfaction. Each dish at Uncle Boon's Sister varies between $7 and $18 depending if you get Chicken, Beef or Prawns with your noodle dish, so very affordable for the Nolita area. Uncle Boon's Sister is a relaxed, street-food version of the flagship location, which I think adds a fun dynamic to the duo.
When you get the chance, stop by Uncle Boon's Sister and let me know what you get! Thanks for reading!