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Asia Restaurant - Sari Street, Jeddah

Just from the name you can tell that this restaurant serves Asian food. Being our favorite restaurant since we first live here, Asia serves particularly Thai food. In fact, it is also a favorite among the umroh/hajj tour operators from Indonesia. In umroh/hajj season, don't try to come inside, when you see a big bus parked or stop outside to unload its passangers. Well, if you're lucky, you can find a table, but the wait is long.

It is quite strategically located in a corner of the ever busy Sari Street. Just by the first gas station after taking the left turn to Sari Street from Madinah Road airport direction. A medium sized placed restaurant filled with 3 sections. The small corner in the front is the usual bachelor section. Then inside are the family sections; one is comprised of tables divided by flexible room divider which can accomodate a small group of 5-6 people and the other one is the rooms for at least 8 persons. When you enter, you'll see a collection of small decorations from Asia, mainly Thailand. A feeling of eating in a common restaurant is very thick with a dimmed lighting welcoming  you.

The menu has a wide range of variety, ranging from seafood, chicken to beef. And since the menu book has pictures you can figure it out yourself, how it will be served. Our favorite is the shrimp tom yum (hot n sour soup). It's the only food that our picky eaters children willing to eat (sadly, without the shrimp, only the soup with rice). The taste is not strong in spices, but sufficient. Another snack or appetizer that is nice is the shrimp tempura. The picture in the menu doesn't look very enticing, but the real stuff looks prettier. Quite a contrary, isn't it?

For each main ingredient; beef, chicken, fish, and shrimp, they have a various way of cooking. For beef our favorite are the chinese broccoli stir fry and cashew beef.  Unlike common beef stirfry, the meat is quite soft and chewable.  For chicken, I'd recommend the chicken vegetables. It has lots of vegetables with big slices of chicken. But again the taste need a punch of salt or japanese soysauce.

We've tried fried fish in sauces, but the fish is not hot. Seem like it was prefried then heated. That's why we never order this kind of fish again. Instead, try the fried noodles with shrimp. But not the Thai fried noodles, it's just too sour for our taste.. The fried noodles reminded me of the tasty chinese fried noodles I have back home. Of course for drinks we have ice tea in jug, though it has too much ice cubes.

We usually order about 2-4 dishes for the 2 of us. Most often, we have to pack it to go. And it only costs us less than 100 sar. That's why probably it is one of the favorite restaurants. It is cheap, has fast service and various choice of dishes, though the taste need a lot more punch for my asian tongue. But, still we like to come to it regularly.