Over in Mac Gregor Village you’ll find a handful of restaurants set off of 64 in a plaza. Cilantro, Tribute Pizza, Tony’s Oyster Bar, Jimmy V’s and also the lesser-known, Wasabi! With a mixed Japanese-Thai menu, Wasabi mimics the more popular Sushi-Thai with its offerings spanning the Asian continent. And after my second visit, I think it’s a decent choice but just doesn’t quite rock the house for me. Here’s why…
Inside Wasabi opens up to a large dining room with a busy bar area full of Japanese decorations. In my head it looks more like typical Japanese restaurant that added Thai as opposed to Thai-Sushi which feels like it went the other way around. The menu spans the usual culprits, sushi, tempura, teriyaki, Thai noodles and curries along with a smattering of house specials. I order up the pad thai with chicken for lunch which comes with soup and salad for a reasonable $8. The living room is a bit busy with the Cary crowd which is nice to see.
It only takes 10 minutes or so for our food which is great for an abbreviated lunch period. The salad with ginger dressing looks basic but fine, the miso soup falls in the same category: ok! My main shows up and it’s a generous portion of flat noodles with bits of egg, nice slices of white meat chicken along with nice bits of scrambled egg and scallions. A nice sprinkle of crushed peanuts on top completes the dish! While all the parts of Wasabi’s pad thai was decently cooked (tender noodles, stir-fried chicken and good egg), the dish just came off a bit flat for me. As if an ingredient or two was missing in the pad thai. There’s a long ingredient list for pad thai which is why I’d rather just order it when dining out. But maybe the tamarind sauce? The dish was just missing that sweet and sour element you usually get in Thai food. I wrapped up half the dish to bring home, thankfully the portion size was solid!
Service at Wasabi was good and you’re able to get in and out for lunch pretty quickly, woohoo! But I did eat my leftovers that night and it didn’t get any better after sitting around so I stand by my original assessment. Wasabi, you’re doing a decent job but just missing the flava that I usually associate with good Thai eats. Or maybe I just chose off the wrong side of the menu, I guess I’ll have to try Japanese for my next visit, bon appetit!