Some people have hobbies; Panita Pirompak has a restaurant.
All About Thai, located at 670 Osborne St., opened its doors in mid-June.
Pirompak, who grew up in Bangkok, Thailand and Helix Li, who came to Canada from Hong Kong, became friends while studying engineering at the University of Manitoba. After graduating they each got engineering jobs. Pirompak practices industrial engineering while Li works in electrical engineering.
"That’s why we’re open only in the evenings," Pirompak said of the partners’ restaurant.
All About Thai is open from 5 to 9 p.m. Monday to Thursday, Fridays from 5 to 10 p.m. and Saturdays from 3 to 10 p.m.
"I don’t know what made me search on Kijiji and then I found a restaurant for lease," Pirompak said. The restaurant was formerly Woo’s Cafe, a longtime South Osborne staple.
Pirompak and Li redecorated, set up their kitchen and developed a menu.
People from the neighbourhood and some from outside who read a review of All About Thai on the Internet responded.
Restaurant prices are reasonable. Snacks such as Gai Satay (chicken skewers) and Keaw Krob Pouh Ath (crab rangoon) can be had for $8. I plan on having Tom Yum Goong $8 (shrimp in hot and sour soup) on my next visit.
I actually ate Pad Preow Waan (pineapple stir-fried with chicken) and Kang Karee (chicken with potato in yellow curry sauce) which cost $9.50 and $10 respectively. I watched Pirompak deftly prepare these dishes. She clearly enjoys cooking.
A cup of jasmine rice completes but does not overwhelm ingredients which include cashews, vegetables and curry. My father, a traditionalist in terms of diet, and I shared these tasty dishes.
Pirompak created some of the restaurant’s recipes while others come from her childhood.
"I needed to modify the ingredients a little bit. I couldn’t find some kinds of vegetables, really tropical things," she said.
As for spiciness, "It’s up to the customer," Pirompak added.
As someone who had the good fortune to visit Thailand and experience biting into something that set my mouth on fire, it was good to know that I could choose the spice level.
Pirompak has been teaching the restaurant’s recipes to Li, who could be needed in the kitchen. "I know 60% to 70% of the recipes," Li said. "I don’t cook as quickly."
Li added that the desserts are delicious.
You can dine in or pick up your dinner at All About Thai. For more information call the restaurant at 204-504-6411.
Dianne Doney is a community correspondent for Fort Rouge. You can contact her at email@example.com.