Patsa Thai Thai Shop

Thai boat noodle (ก๋วยเตี๋ยวเรือ, kuai tiao ruea) has taken Penang by storm during the past several months. Unlike most food enthusiasts, I prefer to check new food after the initial hype had subsided. The destination today is Patsa Thai Thai Shop at Jalan Dato Keramat.
The spacious interior of Patsa Thai Thai Shop has many rows of proper tables arranged on one side, and several low tables on another. To be seated at the latter, customers are requested to remove their shoes prior to stepping on the elevated platform. Tatami mats are provided for the comfort of customers.
Patsa Thai Thai Shop is operated by a duo from Thailand. Based on the caricature on the front of the menu, you will see the resemblance when you visit.
Thai boat noodle is the specialty in this restaurant. There are three types of noodle to choose from: Kuey Tiew (เส้นเล็ก), Bee Hoon (เส้นหมี่) and Glass Noodle (เส้นบะหมี่เหลือง). For each type, there is a soup (น้ำ) and a dry (แห้ง) version.
Each serving of Thai Boat Noodle (ก๋วยเตี๋ยวเรือ, RM1.90) is very small in size. You can easily finish a bowl in 2 or 3 mouthful. It is normal to order at least 5 bowls for starters. The standard portion includes chicken slices (เนื้อไก่) and chicken ball (ลูกชิ้นไก่).
However if you like more ingredients, you can order the Thai Boat Noodle Special (ก๋วยเตี๋ยวเรือพิเศษ, RM6.00) instead. This premium version has all ingredients of a standard serving, plus a chicken drumstick (น่องไก่), extra chicken slices and chicken balls.
Honestly, I think the taste of chicken drumstick is not perfectly compatible with the noodle, so you can order one serving of the premium version to try before ordering more.
Kuey Tiew (เส้นเล็ก) is very similar to the Chinese flat noodle (粿条). I find that this noodle goes well with both the soup and dry version.
Bee Hoon (เส้นหมี่) or rice vermicelli is better enjoyed as the soup version. It is better to consume the noodle while it is still warm, lest it absorbs excessive soup when soaked for too long.
As for Glass Noodle (เส้นบะหมี่เหลือง), it is homemade yellow noodle with springy texture. This noodle is particularly suitable in its dry version.
Generally, the soup version is quite strong in savory meat flavor. The soup itself is similar to beef noodle soup (ก๋วยเตี๋ยวเนื้อ), but remember that Patsa Thai Thai Shop is a beef-free and pork-free restaurant.
On the other hand, the dry version carries a delightful aftertaste of sweetness. This is further accentuated by crunchiness of crushed peanuts.
Condiments are available on each table. They are dried chili flakes, green chili sauce, red chili paste, sugar and fish sauce. Sugar is meant to be added to the dry version of Thai Boat Noodle, but I feel that it is sufficiently sweet already.
According to the staff, the highest number of Thai Boat Noodle consumed by a single person is more than 30 bowls! Can you beat this? Let's see how many empty bowls you can stack up!
Besides Thai Boat Noodle, the restaurant has a number of recommended side dishes. The most highly-acclaimed one is Thai Herbs Fried Chicken Wing (ปีกไก่ทอดสมุนไพร, RM10.00) which comes in 3 wings and 3 drumettes. The chicken is well-marinated with Thai spices, then deep-fried to golden crisp which is gratifying with each bite. The only blemish is that the chicken is quite oily.
My drink is the staff's recommendation: Matum Water (น้ำมะตูม, RM2.00), which is bael fruit juice. Bael is native to India but is cultivated widely across Southeast Asia, where it is known as "matum" (มะตูม) in Thailand. This cold beverage has pleasantly sweet and mildly sour, making it a very refreshing thirst-quencher. It is served in an interesting mug made from clay.
Patsa Thai Thai Shop is an interesting restaurant to patronize when you are in the area. The pricing of Thai boat noodle may be affordable at the first pass, but the bill adds up as you start stacking empty bowls on top one another. Nevertheless, it would be a shame if you do not give this eatery a try.

Address: 29C, Jalan Dato Keramat, 10150 George Town, Pulau Pinang
Contact: 016-476-6156
Business hours: 5:00pm-12:00am

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