East Meat – East Meets West (Rishon)

East Meat – East Meets West (Rishon)
"Thai grill restaurant featuring popular Asian rice and noodle dishes. Outstanding value for money, tasty and large portions, take comfort in knowing it's money well-spent after a heavy shopping spree at the nearby Gold Mall..."

Don’t get confused from my previous post EatMeat … Now there’s an East Meat! Located conveniently across from the Kenyon HaZahav (Gold Mall) in Rishon Lezion and recently opened around 1.5 months ago, where you can find popular Asian dishes, including Asian-style grilled meats, noodles and salads. Now all those reluctant-shopper husbands and boyfriends that were dragged to the mall, can seek some solace knowing that the pricing is exceptional and their portions are generous – another advantage, especially after a heavy day’s worth (and much lighter wallet) of the wife or girlfriend’s shopping antics…

Luckily for Hanan, we only drove to Rishon to find a place for dinner! The hostess was very welcoming, outside, a wood decking porch is lined with various tropical plants, where you can sit and watch the local shoppers with all their purchases. When you enter you almost feel as if you’re in the entrance to a fancy hotel lobby, beautiful grey armchairs and light green booths on the side complement with the dark wood tables and wood paneling along the booths’ wall. The accents of green are echoed on the opposite wall.

However the interior is more an industrial-chic, with its high walled ceilings, a large neon red ‘Meat’ sign that illuminates the wood and its unique lighting (I especially love the bar lighting) – As we were a couple they tried to ‘set the mood’ dimming the lights for that romantic-feel, a nice gesture, they were very accommodating when I asked for the usual lighting, especially for my food photography 😉

Eclectic Decor
Eclectic Decor

The bar is impressive, tall shelves that reach the first floor, house a variety of alcohols, wines, vintage cameras and other ornaments. Behind the bar you can see part of the kitchen peeking through. Then the most striking feature, above the bar on the first floor, a large glass window displaying the fresh meat fridge. Reminiscent of my days in London and walking down Soho Chinatown, where meat and other poultry were openly displayed in the restaurant windows. However, here it is done somewhat tastefully and from a distance, perhaps this feature is not for everyone, particularly vegetarians… I did however, find it strangely beautiful as it added something unique to the design of the restaurant.

We were given a free sampler of some of the salads on the menu: Mixed cabbage and sesame, Vietnamese Chicken Salad – with a hint of mint and lemongrass and Thai salad (which we favoured out of the 3) with chicken, noodles and a spicy peanut sauce.

Starters choose from chicken wings coated in Thai spices or chicken skewers in curry and coconut milk; for those cold days – Thai chicken soups, Tom Yum with galangal root [similar looking to ginger, but with a peppery taste], lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves or Tom Khai Gai Soup, essentially similar to the other soup, but with coconut milk.  For the vegetarians: Edamame, cauliflower with a sweet chili dip and spring rolls. Their other salads include the sample salads as mentioned, along with the entrecote salad and the classic, papaya salad.

Onto the mains, to a lesser extent, fish dishes of either tempura cod with Thai vegetables or salmon teriyaki, which can either be served with the vegetables or rice. There are the typical dishes for the less adventurous, schnitzels and burgers. A variety of Thai rice and noodle dishes with either beef, chicken, tofu or entrecote – all with some interesting Thai flavours like lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, galangal root, coconut milk or tamarind paste … Each dish sounding better than the previous … Then for those real adventurous (and very brave) souls: Lom Mid Khai consisting of young chicken, chicken liver and heart in a garlic coconut sauce.

Favourites like the classic, Pad Thai or Pad See Ew (not ew!), wide rice noodles with bok choy, Chinese broccoli and soy sauce – both have vegetarian options. And of course the best comfort food, tempura chicken with sweet and sour sauce. The waitress recommended Pad Ka Pow – beef with green beans, onion, hot peppers and complete with a fried egg. If you are not in the mood for any of those, well there are the grilled meat dishes all served with Thai sauce and a choice of either fries, vegetables, rice, vegetable rice or noodles!  Choose from the East Burger, the bun made of noodles (or regular bun), chicken, veal, entrecote steak or fillet.

We came hungry!! For the indecisive (and the hungry) people, the business (i)deal, choose any main dish and receive a free starter and cold drink: Asian salad (pickled vegetables with sesame sprinkles) or the soup of the day. The cold drinks include either Thai Cold tea, lemonade or orange juice. We ordered a fresh pickled salad with sesame sprinkles and the soup of the day was either bean or corn soup. We chose the corn soup, it was very mild, not spicy but delicious with a lovely velvety, thick texture – We highly recommend it! Although we had the business deal, I could not resist ordering my favourite Thai dish: Papaya salad, much to my delight it was a large serving, easily shared. We ordered it spicy of course (you can ask to tone down the chili), it certainly cleared our sinuses! I think it’s one of the best salads ever invented, top of my list… Try their Thai Cold Tea, a refreshing blend of green tea, lemongrass, tamarind (perhaps?) and fresh mint, I wish we had had a jug of it, it also eases the heat from the chili 😉

Our mains were excellent – real Thai-style comfort food. Hanan had the Thai beef and eggplant rice dish, which we highly recommend – it had a special, rich and dense flavor from the red curry, together with the kaffir lime, lemongrass, galangal root and Thai spices. The dish also had authentic Thai ingredients like the Thai zucchini, the owner (friendly and hospitable) informed us that he is waiting for his first shipment of Thai eggplant.

I had the Pad See Ew, which was very fresh and mild; when the owner inquired about our meal and after hearing I love charif (spicy) food, he rushed back a few minutes later with some diced red chili! The chili gave the dish an added edge, but even without the chili it was still very enjoyable, also it’s a dish I recommend to calm your taste buds after the spicy papaya salad!

Incredibly full, we were unable to finish our mains (the first for me!), we took the rest home. After a satisfying meal, although we could not eat a further bite, I was intrigued by the tapioca dessert and encouraged Hanan to share it. Well folks, I have found my new summer dessert: It did not disappoint, served in a huge goblet one could comfortably share this too; the dessert was incredibly refreshing, and surprisingly light. Tapioca pearls floating in a dreamy coconut cream base with melon, pineapple and crushed ice … It was heavenly … Their other desserts include chocolate soufflé, fruit carpaccio with strawberry sorbet or some indulgent crepes, filled with chocolate nougat and drizzled with chocolate sauce …

Tapioca - My New Soulmate
Tapioca – My New Soulmate

Come hungry and leave with a happy and satisfied belly.

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