What I love more than anything when it comes to eating is variety. So we came well prepared, our party of 3, 4 if you include Baby Talks A Lot but she didn’t really eat anything but downed some milk. We ordered enough dishes to get a decent sampling of 4th Street Market’s offerings.
Khao Soi wagyu brisket
My time in Portland exposed me to a whole other side of Thai food. That side includes this dish, a form of curry noodles. It’s not a dish you will find very commonly at most Thai restaurants stateside, and when you do it’s probably not that good. Excellent Thai food strikes a perfect harmony between salty, sweet, sour, spicy, and funky. Fortunately, Jason Quinn and his Playground crew do this dish some justice, but I’ve had better. Heck even the version I make is better. I’d prefer if they amped up the funk and tempered the sweet. I might not sure if you really can get this in Orange Country so Noodle Tramp might be your new go to spot. While traditionally served with chicken, Noodle Tramp gives you the option for brisket which was actually a tasty twist. The wagyu is nice but not really necessary.
Pan Roast shrimp and chorizo
I’ve only ever had pan roast one other time at Ritter’s. It was tasty there, but a tad too sweet for my liking. Mar’s version is saltier, maybe too salty but it was very flavorful. It ain’t cheap at $10 for a bowl, but it’s quite the hearty portion. Big Head Talks A Lot brought it home with the intention of adding more rice for round 2.
Stoner Papas french fries, carne asada, bolsa roast pork belly, chorizo fried rice, fried egg, salsa verde, onions, cilantro
This was way underwhelming. I’m not sure if they were just backed up and rushing but this was a sloppy mediocre mess. The fries were WAY underdone. The egg obviously wasn’t runny enough. The rest of it was just meh. I think you’d have to be stoned to actually think this was awesome.
2 Piece Combo fried chicken, corn bread, coleslaw, chipotle potato salad
I’m not a fan of the Uncle Lou’s fried chicken at The Playground. This is a completely different type of fried chicken. It had a very unique spice combination, very heavy on the cumin I think. The breading was quite heavier than what I am used to. Overall, better than Uncle Lou’s version, but I wouldn’t come back. It’s just not my cup of tea. The side of sweet dipping vinegar or something added some good balance.
While visually kind of unappealing, the cornbread was sweet, moist, and indulgent, especially with a good helping of that butter.
A bit tart, crunchy, and not too heavy.
Chipotle Potato Salad
Not that memorable
7 – Good (for the food)
4 – Not bad