Sakoontra is a Thai restaurant located in the Costco Shopping Plaza off of West Ox Road in Fairfax. I am very partial to all Asian cuisines, but am especially drawn to Thai restaurants.  I heard about Sakoontra from classmates and coworkers, but never tried it out until last week. My friend, Adam, shares my affection for the various dishes offered at most Thai restaurants, so I invited him to join me.

We started out with the hoy obb, which is an appetizer of steamed mussels served in a tangy, slightly spicy lemongrass broth. The mussels themselves were very large and juicy. The lemongrass broth contained sliced red onion and whole basil leaves, which also amped up the flavor. The dish is served with a sauce that has a little kick, but doesn’t make or break the taste.

Adam ordered the pad phed per my suggestion. I didn’t suggest the dish because I had ever eaten it before, but because I was interested in trying it as well. This dish is prepared by stir-frying bamboo shoot, red and green peppers, fresh chili pepper and basil in a fiery red curry paste. As with most of their entrées, you have the choice of mixed vegetables, chicken, beef, pork or a seafood combination of shrimp, scallops and squid. It is served alongside a large serving of white rice. When the dish first came out, it smelled a little funky, but it tasted delicious. The sauce was very spicy — as indicated with two chili peppers on the menu — so I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone who cannot handle a decent amount of heat.

As for my entrée, I selected the keow wahn, which is a green curry dish. I ordered mine with the chicken, which is simmered in green curry with coconut milk, bamboo shoot, green and red peppers and basil. This dish was also served with a heaping bowl of rice, which I proceeded to pour the green curry over. I love spicy food and believe that when it comes to Thai food, the spicier the better. This isn’t the spiciest curry dish on the menu, but it packs the perfect amount of heat to satisfy my taste buds and was also very refreshing.

The restaurant itself has a funky feel with a lot of different colors and some neon lights. They do not offer any discounts for Mason students. However, they do feature specials daily. The portions are generous (I took over half of my entrée home), which really makes a difference when considering the price. I definitely recommend Sakoontra to Thai food lovers, those who are curious to try Thai cuisine and those who love spicy food. Until next time, I’d rather be eating…