Thai Riffic Newtown
109 King St

Thai Riffic has become very popular in a popular area (King St Newtown) for restaurants. Its a large place with lots of different spaces for diners.

We were there with D, N and Z for a meal on a Saturday night - so it was always going to be busy but we were in great company to share a meal.

It has a nice feel to it as soon as you walk in. The service is also friendly and attentive without being over the top. The popularity doesn't seem to slow things down here nor does it make it seem like you're crowded out either.

We started with a few entree's - why not! First up were the duck rolls - who doesn't like a duck roll! They were described in the menu as house made spring rolls of Peking duck, shitake mushroom and waterchestnut served with plum sauce. They were very nice. The outer was beautifully crisp and the duck filling went perfectly. I would have liked a hoi sin sauce with it though but they were still great. Then an old favourite arrived - crispy “money bags” that were filled with crab meat, minced chicken, sweet corn, peas and peanuts wrapped with pastry. I love these things!

Then yet another favourite - satay chicken skewers.

These ones were described as petite satay chicken and come in a serving of eight skewers.

What arrives are small grilled marinated chicken sticks served with homemade peanut sauce and cucumber relish.

They were certainly nice and the larger quantity of smaller skewers makes it a lot easier to share when you're eating with groups.

The satay sauce that came with this was also really nice but it possibly could have been a slightly bigger serving.

With our main courses we had some tough choices to make.

We couldn't resist the five spice duck though.

It was free range braised duck with five spice, shitake mushroom that came served with Chinese broccoli.

It was a hefty serving of duck and the individual chunks were large but very tender.

Sometimes when you order a duck dish you have to go on a search mission to find the duck pieces - but not with this one! It was packed with juicy duck.

You have to have at least one curry when you eat Thai - but usually you end up having more anyway.

We chose a panang curry that had a great sauce and plenty of meat.

The panang curry is billed as a delicious light curry served with red capsicum, snow peas,green beans and broccoli cooked in red curry sauce.

The sauce had a real kick to it - but with a red curry you want that. It wasn't disappointing.

The green vegetables went well with it too - again the main ingredient was the chicken and the vegetables didn't overshadow this.

Mlady's choice from the menu was the BBQ baby octopus.

Sometimes these dishes can end up being overcooked and chewy. This one wasn't. It was nicely done so you got the lovely BBQ flavour with a tender meal.

In the menu this was shown as char grilled baby octopus served with stir fried mixed vegetables and chilli lime dressing.

Mlady and I love chilli and lime together. They go so well - especially when combined with seafood. This was no exception - it went well, had a nice tang and some kick to it.

For me the dish of the night was the chilli jam soft shell crab. I will usually choose a soft shell crab dish at Thai restaurants to give it a go - and because I love soft shell crab of course.

This one was my choice obviously.

It was described as crispy soft shell crab topped with special housemade chilli jam sauce, shallot, sweet basil and sliced red chilli.

There was of course plenty of soft shell crab with this dish - as with everything here. It was nicely done too - I'd gladly have it here again!

Our final main course was another specialty of the house (like the soft shell crab). It was the Thai style slow cooked pork belly.

Whilst we all normally choose crispy pork this was really nice.

The braised pork belly came with sweet soy sauce, cinnamon and star anise and was served with steamed bok choy. It was really nice but maybe next time we'll try the crispy pork belly just for comparison purposes.

Thai Riffic Newtown is a really good Thai restaurant among a glut of  other Thai places. We enjoyed all our dishes. The quality was great, the quantity was ample and the service was efficient and friendly. It's worth dropping by if you're in the area.

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