The cuisine we’re exploring this month is one that I suspect most of you already like: Thai cuisine. And the newest restaurant to share this food with Springfield is called Thailand Station.
The restaurant is owned by two friends, Gift Williams and Mint Hempala. Located at 1730 E. Republic Road in a small shopping center that also houses Sugarfire BBQ, this little restaurant space has one very unique north-facing wall. On it is a large a colorful mural showcasing and defining the different regions of Thailand—and the food styles and ingredients each one of those regions is known for. It lets us know, for example, that southern Thai food will include chicken and hearty broths; the central region offers lots of rice-based dishes with fried eggs, green veggies and seafood soups; and so on and so forth until this very entertaining and educational art piece comes to an end. What diners get in addition to bright artwork is a good understanding of what to expect when the menu arrives.
Just like at so many other Asian restaurants around town, the menu here is not a small one but one with lots of options to choose from and some helpful photos of their most popular dishes. This vast reading material has the expected options and more; appetizers, soups, salads,wok dishes, noodle dishes, fried rice, curries, fish and seafood and my favorite, a chef special list of dishes that may be a bit more unique. Now, what to do with such a large menu? You should probably order a dish from each section, right? You may laugh, but that’s almost what I ended up doing.
I decided to start with two apps. First was a crispy tofu, deep fried and served with a homemade sweet and sour sauce topped with crushed peanut. Second, I tried the Moo Ping, which consisted of three pork skewers, marinated and grilled and served with a house chili lime sauce that really complemented the taste of that special char it gets from a grill.