Cafe Bangkok. After a most sumptuous Mexican meal at the Ridge Harvest Party with Jo-Ann and other friends last night, and lunch with friends from Marin Pros at Baja Fresh today, I was ready for a different ethnic experience. I spent the afternoon at an IFSR lecture at Unity in Marin at Hamilton Field in Novato. Not usually venturing this far north unless it is on the way to Sonoma, I decided to do a drive through unfamiliar territory and see where it led me. After snaking around on S. Novato Blvd. for some time, I saw a strip mall called "The Square" where I found a charming Thai restaurant, Cafe Bangkok. The outside was nothing special, but once you open the door, you can tell that the owners have pride in the decor and making everyone feel welcome into an oasis of Thailand.
I ordered a couple dishes to try from a menu that had a thoughtful section of photos where each dish was featured in a stylish way that provided more insight than many written words. When I ordered the pumpkin and chicken red curry, the waiter commented "Oh, that's a good one!", which gave me the feeling that this would be a very special meal. You can see it steaming above. It also had very fresh and crisp cooked vegetables, and wasn't too spicy although there was a little red pepper apparent.
I also ordered the Thai fried rice (beef), which had lots of nicely sauteed vegetables in the rice. Not just your usual peas and carrots, but onion slices sauteed to bring out their sweetness and fresh red pepper pieces. As I've noticed with many Thai restaurants, there was a topping of fresh raw grated carrot and slices of cucumber adorning the top. Good food, good service, pleasant atmosphere and reasonable prices (even bargain). Definitely worth a meander off the beaten path to Novato to enjoy.