Saturday, November 13, 2010

Indochine Pavilion, New Haven CT

Finally, amongst a horde of Thai restaurants on Chapel Street in New Haven, something distinctly different: Vietnamese food! ...And more Thai food as well.

The decor is... typical South Asian restaurant.
They have both Thai and Vietnamese on the menu, but we've only tried Vietnamese.

Vietnamese Spring Rolls: We usually like to start off with these.  They're distinct from typical must've-been-mass-produced spring rolls you usually see. Served with a tangy sweet sauce, the super crispy shell contains a great meat, noodle, veggie mixture. The portion is 3 rolls cut in half, but we devoured all but one before we remembered to take a picture. This is definitely the way to start your meal here. 9.
We've heard good things about their lunch buffet, but after seeing it, we weren't compelled to try it.  We love noodle soup, so we usually go with Pho - a beef noodle soup which here is served with all the condiments on the side.  This time on the plate were bean sprouts, lime, onions and Thai basil, along with the usual spices and condiments. (They don't have the bottles of sauces that you get at some Pho restaurants.)
This is the smaller of the two portion sizes
Pho: We wouldn't recommend eating this without a good douse of all the condiments provided - they are essential to the dish!  Do not forget the hot sauce. After setting the bowl all up, the result was a really great 8.5.

Prices are good, servers were friendly and the food we had was tasty.

Overall Experience: 8

Indochine Pavilion on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Lia's Pizza, Shelton CT

Lia’s has been a favorite lunch spot of mine for years now.  They have some tables but this is primarily a takeout joint.  Located on River Road in Shelton, it's right across from Sunnyside Park - a good place to have your lunch by the river on a nice day.

Lia's is a bit of a hole in the wall which is fine by me but what used to be an adjacent seating area has been turned into a consignment shop!  Nothing like browsing at some used couches and TV's to build up your appetite while you wait for your food.  The prices for food are very good but drinks are a bit overpriced, and if you want a 2 liter expect to pay double to drink it in their cafĂ©.

Service is always quick and their red sauce is nothing less than excellent - really this is what makes Lia’s in my opinion.  The pizza and sandwiches are good but my favorite is their chicken parm grinder.

Chicken Parm Grinder: The chicken cutlet itself is flavorful; breaded and fried to a crisp.  On a great tasting roll, they layer the chicken with a good bit of mozzarella, bake it til the roll is golden, then pour on their awesome signature sauce. (They charge for additional sauce on the side.) The result is an excellent 9

The place itself is a bit odd, but the food is really good!

Overall Experience: 7.5

Lia's Pizza on Urbanspoon