Sunday, June 7, 2009

Wat Mongkolratanaram - Berkeley

We were planning on visiting this Thai Temple last week, but then last minute I found out about the temple in Fremont and went to that one instead. Same as the other Thai temple, there are food stalls there set up on Sunday to help the temple. This one supposedly draws more visitors and people were advised to come earlier.
Me and hubby got there around ten minutes before 10 AM. Though it looked quiet we decided to go in. Volunteers were already busy setting up the stalls. A few patrons were lingering around the tables set up on the not so big area. We chose a spot under the sun to warm up. All of a sudden, a group of twenty people walked in at the same time. If I didn't know better I would think they all came on a bus. I looked at hubby and he was thinking the same thing. Finally it looked like what they said on yelp. Hubby was skeptical earlier when I told him to go earlier.
With hubby sitting down 'guarding' our seats, I lined up for a bowl of beef noodle soup. Choice was given on size of noodle, small-medium-wide rice noodle. Soup was served on a melamine bowl instead of styrofoam, I credited them on this. I don't like my soup on the styrofoam bowl. It generated a lot of waste. Soup consisted of a few beef ball, a few slices of beef, chopped celery, fried garlic, tongchai and bean sprout. After paying them 6 tokens (equal to $6), I stepped aside to dress my soup. There were two different types of chilli. Regular sambal oelek paste and some rough grind red chillies. I put in both along with the pickled green serrano and its vinegar. A few squirt of fish sauce for good measure and I was ready to slurp it in.

All in all the beef noodle soup satisfied our taste for breakfast/brunch because it was hot, just perfect for the chilly morning in Berkeley. The soup after a while started to get to me because it's a bit too sweet for my taste. It kinda reminded me of the Thai boat noodle I had in LA.

Hubby ended up ordering another bowl of noodle soup because the other options just didn't fit his taste for breakfast. There were stalls for rice with dishes either vegetarian or non-vegetarian. These stalls were actually very busy. Rice with one dish would cost 5 tokens, two dishes 6 tokens, three dishes 7 tokens. There were also fried chicken with sticky rice, papaya salad, spring rolls and dessert like mango sticky rice and coconut flavor Thai style dorayaki. :)

We also shared mango sticky rice (5 tokens). Sticky rice consisted of brown and white sticky rice with generous amount of mango. Yummy. Before we left, we had one dish to go without rice. I wasn't too sure what's the name. It was made of minced pork with basil and green beans. Very good but not spicy enough.

I expected some fried banana so I was disappointed when none was found. It was still a good experience, though for that distance I don't think we'll be back to that location again.