Topaz Thai Restaurant
I love Thai food, don’t you? It’s so nice to live in New York and have a panoply of Thai restaurants to choose from. Last night, MDP and I went to Topaz, an old favorite located past Carnegie Hall on 56th Street.
Just take a few steps down from street level and you enter a world of delicious food. Topaz seats about 40 people, give or take a few, and is often bustling with guests, many of whom seem to be tourists. But don’t mistake Topaz for a tourist trap, no. This isn’t like Guy Fieri’s new restaurant or “the world’s largest Applebee’s” over on 50th and 7th.
No, Topaz is a real treat. I called ahead for a reservation, and upon arriving, was greeted as “Miss Nicole” and was promptly seated.
We ordered the curry puffs for an appetizer, and though they took a long time to get to us, they were well worth the wait. The crispy, flaky exterior belied a perfectly spiced, soft inside. They were on the small side–much smaller than Yum Yum’s, for example, but Topaz offered three (to Yum Yum’s two), so all was well.
For an entree, I opted for the Drunken Noodles, possibly my favorite Thai dish. Rife with julienned carrots, Chinese broccoli and flat, wide noodles that perfectly absorb the dish’s juices, Drunken Noodles warned to be on the spicy side (indicated by a small chili pepper beside its name on the menu). I ordered it anyway–and paid the price this morning–but it was quite delicious. I can’t tell you if this is Topaz’s best noodle dish, as it’s the only one I ever order because it’s just that good.
MDP got the Lovely in the Golden Nest, which is a rather ornate way of saying “chicken with cashew nuts on a bed of crispy Chinese noodles.” The noodles form the eponymous nest, and the cashew chicken lays atop them. This was on the sweet side, and tinged with a flavor of celery (which I don’t care for in this dish, but it’s always there. Such is life). MDP must have enjoyed it since he didn’t leave anything–not even a fragment of a Chinese noodle–to spare.
All in all, Topaz is quite good, especially for its neighborhood filled with crappy diners and fast food fare.
127 West 56th Street between 6th and 7th avenues
Midtown West, New York
Take the N/Q/R to 57th-7th and walk south one block, then west on 56th Street.