It all started five years ago. Our eyes met over a steaming dish of pad thai… ok I lie, that would be all too convenient, wouldn’t it? I have in my head various versions of how “it all started”. I mean, I’ve known Panu for years, we worked at the same company but it didn’t “all start” when we first met. Truthfully? I thought he was totally weird when we first met, but that’s a whole nother story.
How else can I start this story? It all started at work? Boring. How about… It all started at Jackson’s on George? Too… gross. Ok truth? It all started during a work conference in Coolum’s Hyatt Regency resort. Sounds classy but actually, it was about 3am on a Saturday night (or Sunday morning, depends how you see it), with a bunch of us all drunk and chilling out in the pool, spilling red wine and white wine and god knows what else into the very water we were swimming in. Yeah, classy, right? But that, folks, is how it all started.
That was Saturday, November 25, 2006.
beef panang curry
You’re probably wondering what Newtown Thai has to do with all of this? I guess for me, it was one of those moments which set the course for the rest of my life. I could say it was the moment my life began but that’s a little too dramatic because as happy as I am now, I loved being single too. Being single was all about me, what’s not to love about that? And it’s not that it was better, or more fun, it’s just… different.
I’m totally digressing right? Right.
salmon green curry
So after the debaucherous night in the pool, Panu and I didn’t see each other for about three weeks. I spent time with my parents in Brisbane, visited my brother in Townsville and road tripped up to Cairns where I lost all of my luggage (that too is for another story). By the time I came back to Sydney, I was sure Panu had recovered from his wine-binge hangover in Coolum and not remember a thing.
But you know, I’m a sucker for punishment so I suggested we have dinner. He said yes. I suggested Thai. He said yes.
And that’s how we ended up at Newtown Thai.
garlic pepper beef
The food at Newtown Thai is pretty awesome. I know I said Thai Riffic is great, and it is, but it’s all fancy and stuff. If you just want a good simple Thai meal, this is where it’s at. The pad thai is the perfect balance of sweet and savoury, the pad see ew (no photo, sorry) is my favourite and the curries all hit the spot. And the garlic pepper stir fry! Awesome.
I have to say though, the fresh coconut juice is a no go. I’m really not sure what they use – a butter knife maybe? – but they way they hack the top off the poor coconuts… we were finding bits of coconut husk in every mouthful and it wasn’t pleasant.
So back to Newtown Thai in 2006. Panu and I realised we had something real going on and decided to give it a shot and we haven’t looked back since. It’s been five years and I am still very much in… happiness.
It’s our anniversary today and look! It really did all start over a steaming dish of pad thai
ps. we had Thai because I told him Newtown Thai made the best pad thai. He said he knew some place in Crows Nest that made the best pad thai but they closed down pretty soon after so I was winning our disagreements back then and I’m still winning them today. Heh.
pps. these photos of Newtown Thai dishes are not from five years ago, they’re from two weeks ago
117 King Street,
Newtown, NSW, 2042
(02) 9557 2425