Lunch Box : Amy’s Thai Lunch Buffet
For a delicious, hot, flavorful lunch buffet, Amy’s Thai – located on High Street in historic downtown Carlisle, Pa – is one of the best choices around. I went there with my sister on Friday 20 January 2012, and we were both immensely pleased with our meals.
First, we ordered the Thai Hot Tea. The most notable thing about this herbal beverage is the striking color: bright orange if served with cream, deep orange if served with just sweetener. The flavor is lovely and begs to be sweetened, making it a pleasant accompaniment to the often spicy curries and stir-fries on the buffet bar.
The buffet has two bars – one with soups, appetizers, and entrés; the other with fruits, salads, and desserts. Everything on the first bar is piping hot in temperature, but the spicy hot dishes are typically clearly marked.
There are typically two types of soups; on the day I went there was Tom Yum (chicken and mushrooms in a spicy broth) and a meatless Hot and Sour with tofu, shiitake mushrooms, and other vegetables.
The vegetable egg rolls are true standouts, the best I have had; the ratio of wrapper to filling is just right. There are about eight other hot dishes: on the day I went there was fried rice, vegetable pad thai, pork in spicy basil sauce, a chicken curry, shrimp with mixed vegetables, vegetable lo mein, and Thai meatballs (to name a few). The dishes marked “hot” are truly spicy, but the heat does not overpower their other flavors. Everything is well cooked and well prepared. My favorite dishes were the shrimp with mixed vegetables, the chicken curry, the vegetable pad thai, and the Thai meatballs.
The second bar has a nice albeit standard salad section. In addition to the typical canned fruit cocktail, however, there were fresh melon, oranges, and grapes – all of which provided a sweet, cool relief after several spicy bites.
While there are several cookies to choose from for dessert, including oatmeal raisin and vanilla sandwich (not Thai, but still good), the standout dessert is the Thai tapioca. Unlike typical custard-like diner fare, tapioca pearls and fresh coconut shaving swim in a soupy coconut milk base. It is the perfect ending to the meal.
Perhaps the greatest recommendation I can give for Amy’s Thai is that, in twelve years of meals there, I cannot remember a bad dining experience.
Reviewer: CP | January 2012