Busara Thai Cuisine

 The Place: Busara Thai Cuisine

Where: Sehome Village

404 36th St.
Bellingham, WA 98225

Busara Thai Cuisine on Urbanspoon
My fiance and I went to the movies the other day and even though the movie was somewhat of a disappointment the food more than made up for it. I haven't had too much Thai food so there isn't much for me to compare it to but I really liked the food here and was even feeling a bit adventurous. When I go to an asian place I normally stick with some thing I know I will enjoy like the orange chicken or teriyaki chicken. Some thing familiar and relatively safe, but I started this food blog because I really like food, both the flavor and texture of it. I figured having a food blog would be a good way for me to share my love of food with the world and try different things if I'm always trying a new place. So when we decided to go to the movies and I had money I knew it would be a good time to try some place new.

Because we were going to the Sehome movie theater I looked online for places near that area, after all since I take the bus everywhere I didn't want to have to try to walk around to see what is in the area. There were many places I wanted to try, a lot of them were asian which is my favorite eat-out food and a few mexican. I really wanted to try eating some place controversial, some place with mixed reviews rather than some place I know is good (whether from a friend or reviews). Unfortunately I just couldn't do it, I was in the mood for good food, someplace I knew I was going to enjoy if I ate there. Maybe that makes this review a little unfair but sometimes you just have to have something more than just alright. Needless to say Busara hit the mark right there!

I'd always avoided going to Busara because it looked so nice inside and out that I just assumed it was costly. Boy was I wrong, all the reviews I read said this place was inexpensive and they were right especially given the quality. If you have never eaten here I recommend trying it out asap, you are really missing something if you don't. Now I'm not saying its the best restaurant in the world but something everyone should have the chance to enjoy in my humble opinion.The meals are decently priced like I said for coming from a nice sit down restaurant, we went for dinner and the prices were from $8-$15 depending on what you get. We decided not to get any drinks so our whole bill was just under $21 not including tip.

Walking into Busara it looks casually elegant with lots of wood for texture and details as well as colorful fabric, there are windows over one whole wall which gives it an open feel but unlike Goji Bistro the sun wasn't glaring through at all. It has a very calm sort of feel inside and I kinda feel that it has a light happy feel to it because everyone is enjoying them selves and not spending an arm and a leg to do it. The decor is honestly beautiful and I love the chairs, dark wood with beautiful carved flowers at the top. I would definitely suggest this place if you want to take someone out on a date and impress them but don't have a lot of money to spend. This place will definitely impress. One thing that is really cool about this place is that they also have a raised area for bigger parties where people can take off their shoes and sit Thai style, on a cushion with legs folded underneath. If your a westerner like me who is worried about sitting that way for a whole meal they also have a pit under the table so you can put your feet below rather than under you while still pretending you aren't cheating. Opposite of that is a high counter behind which you can see the chefs cooking which I personally enjoy in a restaurant.

 Since it was just me and my fiance we sat along the back wall right next to the raised area. Our waitress was really nice and unobtrusive but she also made sure our cups were always full of water. We went there during dinner time and the menu was divided into four sections, entree, curry, noodles, and fried rice, they also have a vegetarian section.

I did say that I was feeling pretty adventurous and they had some pretty yummy sounding things on the menu but there were two things that really sounded good to me. The Gai Busara which is marinated chicken sauteed in the chef's special thick garlic sauce with steamed vegetables and the Panang Gai which is a curry dish, which is chicken simmered in roasted peanut curry sauce, with basil leaves, bell peppers and coconut milk garnished with fresh lime leaves. Since I never get anything curry I decided I wanted to go with that, however since it is curry I asked if they were all spicy and our waitress said yes and the lowest I could get would be a two on the spicy scale. I'm not big on spicy so I ended up going with the other dish so I wouldn't end up unable to eat a dish I'm paying for.

My fiance went with something I normally would have chosen which was the orange beef (well normally for me it would have been chicken and when I looked at the menu I thought that's what it said instead of beef but they do both beef and chicken). Busara's orange beef has a twist though, its in an orange-caramel sauce, if I had actually read what was in it I probably would have gotten that. The duck and seafood items were the most expensive or I would have really gotten the crispy duck. There are just so many things that look good on their menu I will definitely be eating here again.

One thing I wish they mentioned on the menu is what comes with the dish, its normally taken for granted that asian meals are served with rice but it didn't say that on the menu or that the meal came with a salad so that was an unexpected surprise. I knew we were having rice only because our waitress asked us what kind we would like, I believe they serve brown rice in addition to the white rice which is what we got. I do have to say that this is definitely not the right place for people who have nut allergies as our salad was served on a small plate with a yummy peanut sauce and many other dishes include nuts or a peanut sauce.

I've had peanut sauce on salad before and I've always enjoyed it, if you think its weird I suggest you give it a try. Its like they thinned peanut butter and added some sugar to the mixture so its sweet and peanut-y. Its really gives a small kick to the taste buds because peanut butter is so flavorful and its served with something without a lot of flavor on its own.

It didn't take long for our meals to arrive and boy were we hungry. The only bad thing I can honestly say about my meal is that the sauce wasn't thick like it said on the menu but I think its normally somewhat thin but just thick with garlic. I love garlic, I still can't always take the sharpness of raw garlic but I've come to love it more and more over the years. If you love garlic too then this is the perfect dish for you. Mine and my finance's dishes came swimming in sauce, his was a deep dark brown and mine was more of a medium golden brown. I believe the sauce on mine was soy sauce based but I couldn't say for sure but if it was, it was decent quality with a natural sweetness to it. The garlic itself was finely chopped and just heaped over everything, you could choose to get a lot of garlic in one bite or just move it to the side and get more sauce. You would think having that much garlic on one dish would be overwhelming but it actually wasn't too much and paired with the slight sweetness of the sauce quite well. The chicken was good if a little firmer than I prefer my chicken. I also liked the veggies that were with it, my favorite of them all was the zucchini. All of the vegetables were perfectly cooked without any of them being even a little under or over cooked. The steamed rice was served in little cups but surprisingly enough, even though I like a lot of steamed rice normally, this ended up being the perfect amount for the meal.

Now onto my fiance's dish which he ordered with a one  for spice. It didn't seem to have even a little bit of heat which was fine with both of us in the end and I have heard that the level of spice tends to vary depending on the day you go there. Maybe next time I will get the curry at a level two, since this wasn't spicy, and hope that I get them on an off day.

His dish was amazing, the beef was tender with tons of flavor. The sauce was definitely unique, the first thing you can taste is the caramel, it was sweet with just a hint of that smokey burnt sugar taste you get from fresh caramel, (you can especially smell it when you're making caramel) with hints of citrus. None of it was overwhelming and it did have an orange taste but it was a little more subtle than usual. Words alone can't really describe the pop of flavor on your tongue, I just recommend that you go and try it yourselves. :)

One last word about Busara's the rice was perfectly done, some of the best rice I have had in a long time even though the portion was rather small. I've also heard some complaints about the portions for the main dishes being too small but I thought mine was just fine however the prices did seem a little high for appetizers but since we didn't order any I can't say how the price compares to the portion.

So if  you are looking to impress a date or just enjoy some really stellar food I recommend this place any day of the week. If you stop by believe me you will not go home disappointed and the cherry on top is that its so affordable. With that I hopefully leave you with thoughts of delicious food running through your head and I hope you find something yummy to fill your tummy's cravings today.

Recap: Good quality tasty food for a really good price with somewhat smaller portions. Great place to take a date to impress them without breaking the bank.

2 Responses so far.



  2. What really! lol. Omg you just can't wait can you? Well maybe its been out long enough that I can say it? The Bourne Legacy.

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