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Wednesday, September 03, 2008
LACUZ THAI FUSION CUISINE
No. 29, Lane 236, DunHua South Rd, Sec. 1
website: lacuz.com.tw Chinese only
hours: 12-3 pm, 6 pm-1 am
Kid friendliness: lots of non-adjustable spicy things on the menu, but also some finger foods.
Visit reviewed: 7/16/2008
I've passed by Lacuz Thai quite a few times while sitting in a taxi around this area. Every time I passed it, I wondered what the food was like and I finally got a chance to try it out.
Even though it's all you can eat, the food is made fresh to order. This has its pros (it's served hot and adjusted to the number of people in your group) and cons (the food takes a little longer than if you could just grab it from the buffet). The menu is slightly confusing as there is more than 1 option (NT$390 for 38 dishes, NT$450 for 65 dishes and an extra NT$100 gives you another 15 Japanese barbecue dish choices.), but splurge for the 65 dishes if you want to try everything on the Thai menu.
The menu had little chili peppers denoting spiciness, lemons denoting sourness and higher number next to the chili grading the spiciness- 5 being spiciest.
I'd skip the pad thai and order the pineapple fried rice as well as the fried chicken (both of which we had second orders). Actually everything they fried (the seafood pancake, shrimp cakes) was pretty tasty and served with various dipping sauces.
Even though they size each order to portion with the number in your group, some things like the fried chicken were gone in just a few bites and you should grab the waiter to put in the order of whatever you like, so you can get it sooner than later. I don't know if it was because we were in the back room, but it was sometimes hard to wave down a waiter.
Also, ordering this way, sometimes you'd eat out of sync- for example, they wouldn't necessarily deliver the appetizers/salads first. In fact, our appetizers came after we were done eating a lot of our main dishes. If this bothers you, then you probably wouldn't be able to eat here. It seemed to be whatever the kitchen was able to make was whatever came to your table.
It was actually sort of overwhelming to figure out what to order from their extensive menu, so we stuck with our favorites. Some of the stir fried dishes were quite spicy and some were surprisingly bland.
My mom got the vegetarian set since she couldn't enjoy most of the options in the buffet, but it ended taking longer than our food. Most of the vegetables were also stir fried with little chunks of lemongrass, which ended up being quite sharp and tough to chew, so she'd laboriously pick them out of each dish. For flavor, it was good, but too tough to actually chew.
I liked also the eggplant, long green bean and curry dishes, but the seafood in the tofu dish seemed frozen/not fresh which was a turn off.
Don't forget to order dessert. The tapioca soup was sweet and a good way to mellow out the spices lingering in my mouth.
It was funny to see the long receipt at the end, since I guess they take your "order" even though you pay the flat price. All in all, NT$390 isn't a bad price for an all you can eat lunch- definitely cheaper than Spice Market. It's a modern space with private couch seating rooms in the back and good for groups.
Would I go back? If I was craving Thai, I'd probably still end up at Mei Kung first and then Thai Town, but it was fun to try it. I don't think it's an option for a quick lunch though.
Any leads on more places for good Thai food in Taipei?