Sunday, June 17, 2012

Thai Cuisine – A Future Nationwide Chain?

We belong to a local group that dines out monthly, trying different restaurants and different cuisines… The key goal of the group is really social, but we do come across some nice restaurants and we do have a good time!

This is the front of Surin of Thailand in Knoxville Tennessee.  As stated, the focus is on authentic Thai Cuisine and Sushi!  Our group consisted of about 20 couples…

Laurie snapped this photo of our table… From the left…Edera, Dennis, Ken, Belinda and yours truly. 

In this instance, our group was ordering their entrees from a limited menu.  We had 7 choices plus we could order appetizers, salads and desserts from the regular menu.  The cost of the entrées on our special menu ranged from $9.00 to $22.00.

Laurie and I love appetizers, sometimes even more than the entrees.  Laurie loves good crab rangoon and when she saw these fried Crab Angels, (crab and cream cheese seasoned wontons), she had to have them. ($4.00) They were excellent!

Another appetizer was the Surin Baskets. ($6.50) This flavor combination consists of shrimp, corn, chicken, onion, cilantro and Surin’s spices, served in 6 minature pastry baskets.  They’re accompanied with a honey-peanut cucumber sauce.  This appetizer was another winner!

One diner at our table ordered the Wonton Soup. ($4.00) This combined shrimp and chicken stuffed wontons in a broth with Napa cabbage and scallions.  Thumbs up again!

One interesting soup on the menu is the Seafood Soup. ($6.00) This soup contains squid, mussels, shrimp and scallions in a spicy broth.

These are Fresh Basil Rolls. ($4.50) This was my appetizer.  These rolls are filled with leaf lettuce, fresh basil, bean sprouts, flavorful Thai pork and fresh shrimp and they were accompanied with plum-peanut sauce.  They were very nice and refreshing when dipped in the sauce.

There is a wide selection of appetizers on the regular menu.  These include items like Egg Rolls ($4.00); Satay Beef or Chicken ($6.50) and; Chicken Larb…spicy meat and veggies with cabbage for wrapping. ($7.00)

When Laurie saw that Surin had Sashimi on the menu, she had to order some!  She loves Sashimi and Sushi… This Sashimi Appetizer, ($10.00), consisted of salmon, yellowtail and tuna.  She was a very, very happy camper!

There was a wide variety of Sushi and Sashimi style offerings on the menu.  (Nigiri/Sashimi, Maki, Specials and House Specialties, Maki Mono and a few Sushi combos) I also learned that Maki Mono is fresh seafood rolled in rice and seaweed.  You can spend as little as $4.00 for 2 pieces of Nigiri or as much as $22.00 for one of the house specialties.

Laurie ordered the Ginger Stir Fry with Shrimp. ($11.50) This consists of shrimp with white onions, scallions, zucchini, mushrooms and carrots in a Thai ginger sauce.  Once again, we had a winner!

Another diner ordered the Thai Sea Bass. ($20.00) The sea bass is pan-seared and oven roasted, then served with sautéed jumbo shrimp and scallops accompanied by Chinese celery, scallions, carrots and Napa cabbage.  This diner is gluten intolerant and she was pleased that the restaurant worked with her re: her dietary needs.

Dennis ordered the Ka Proud Lamb, a rack of lamb split into3 thick chops, char-grilled and seasoned with Ka Proud sauce. ($22.00) The Ka Proud sauce uses an herb similar to basil.  The chops are also served with Surin’s spicy basil mushroom and bell pepper sauce and shrimp fried rice.  He told me that the chops were very good indeed…cooked just right!

One other diner at our table also ordered the Thai Sea Bass.  In this case, her entrée was accompanied by the usual Thai ginger-soy sauce.

The menu is quite large, especially considering that this Surin of Thailand is part of a chain.  The size of the menu is more like one would expect in a local Chinese or Thai restaurant.  There are stir fry meats or tofu ($9.00 - $12.50); Noodle and Rice Dishes ($10.00 - $13.00) and; a group of Thai curries ($10.50 - $13.50).  Of note were the Select Special Entrees.  These items included Roasted Duck ($15.00); Spicy Mixed Seafood ($19.00) and; the Tiger Cry, a 15 oz. Rib Eye Steak that’s marinated Thai spiced and served with Surin’s Special Hot Sauce. ($19.00)

I ordered the Thai Barbequed Chicken. ($13.00) This was half of a chicken marinated overnight in Surin’s BBQ sauce and slow roasted, then grilled and served with shrimp fried rice.  I was a little disappointed as I didn’t feel that the chicken had much flavor.  The accompanying sauce plus a little leftover wasabi from Laurie’s sashimi appetizer helped to enhance the chicken…

All in all, our group really liked Surin of Thailand.  Service was solid, the restaurant was attractive and the food was very good.  Laurie and I felt like Surin could possibly become the Thai equivalent of P.F. Chang…but with a lot more dining options to choose from!  We will be back!  It was a very enjoyable dining experience!
In addition to Knoxville Tennessee, Surin of Thailand has locations in Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi.  The Knoxville restaurant is located at 6213 Kingston Pike.  Phone: 865-330-0007.  The Website can be found at:
Just click on any photo to enlarge it…
Thanks for stopping by for a taste of Thailand!
Take Care, Big Daddy Dave


  1. Dear Dave, Everything looks wonderful. This is a nice idea to get together with friends and find new places to dine together. I glad this was enjoyable.
    Happy Father's Day.
    Blessings, Catherine

  2. They sure do make pretty presentations of their food

  3. Gosh, their food looks lovely. It must have been a terrific meal. I'd love to have sampled it. Have a wonderful day, Dave. Blessings...Mary

  4. omgoodness this all looks scrumptious! hi--new follower :)

  5. Very elegant looking dishes and so reasonably priced.