Open Hours: Sun-Thurs 12PM-11PM; Fri-Sat 12PM-12AM
Phone number: 212 777 8424
Price Range: $10-$20
Address: 99 3rd Avenue
Station: 4, 5, 6, N, R, Q, L
The final round for my case competition started too early in the morning today. By 8AM I found myself already sitting at a conference room table on the 37th floor wearing a suit, scarfing down a bagel in anticipation of the case. Case was given, analyzed and presented within the span of three short hours and I’d say I spent a good amount of time stress eating pretzels and peanuts along the way. By the time I left the office, I was in some serious need of real comfort food aka, off to hunt for a New York dinner spot!
My NYU friend chose Ngam as our destination – gotta trust the New Yorker, right? The place is sandwiched between two grander looking restaurants so it’s relatively easy to miss if you’re not paying attention. The joint itself gives off a contemporary industrial vibe with visible pipes on the ceiling, rustic stools, communal tables and simple strung light bulbs.
The kitchen is situated out in the open right at the entrance. You can see exactly how they’re cooking your food and what they’re adding to it, reminds me of how the local Thai like to do it.
Restaurant menu consists of your staple Thai dishes with a modern twist. Ingredients are listed as all natural, mostly insourced from local farmers and meats are claimed to be hormone-free. Nice to note that all their curry and sauces are made from scratch.
First order was the Kale Fried Rice.
We liked the zesty combination of fresh kale, eggs, carrots, onion, heirloom tomato and scallions, but the small portion was rather disappointing. They offer the option of white jasmine rice or brown rice.
Next came the "Gai Yang" Grilled Chicken (can opt for half or whole).
The Cascun Farm chicken was standard, but the sweet and sour sauce that companied the dish was what really won us over – talk about homemade. Meal also comes with a side of rice.
Lastly, we had the Zucchini Pad Thai.
This was by far the crowd favorite. You’ll be amused to know that I thought I was eating rice noodles the entire time – wronggggg. Rice noodles are actually replaced with zucchini noodles mixed with eggs, peanuts, Chinese chives, garlic and fried tofu (if you want the standard version with real noodles opt for the Authentic Old School Pad Thai). Upon request they can also make it spicy. Would highly recommend to those who are looking seeking vegetarian/gluten free options.
Overall, the highlights of this place are the homemade sauces and the Zucchini Pad Thai. Heard a lot about their Thai iced tea and Chiang Mai fries so that’s what I’ll be looking forward to next time around.