Chabaa Thai Wants To Know If You Can Take the Heat

For the fifth year in a row Chabaa Thai in Manayunk is hosting its Spicy Contest. The winner of which will walk away with a cash prize of $500 and another $500 going to the winner’s chosen charity. The Qualification Round runs from January 23rd to February 29th with participants attempting to eat an entire soup or salad plus an entree from the special contest menu.

The top ten will be announced on March 1st and will compete on March 13th in the finals.

Spicy Contest Menu »

Eat Along the Street in Manayunk

E.A.T.S. Eat Along the Street Food Festival and Celebrity Chef Throwdown serves as the kickoff of Manayunk’s Eco Arts Festival. Chabaa Thai chef Moon Krapugthong is hosting the event that benefits Thailand’s Wat Bodd Voraditth orphanage and its goal of training impoverished young people for culinary and hospitality careers.

Attendees will be able to sample dishes from local chefs such as Clark Gilbert of Gemelli, Nick Farrell of Sovana and Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby of the forthcoming Vedge.

A contest for best bite of the night will be judged by a panel of celebrity judges including Jose Garces, Rick Nichols, Drew Lazor and Munish Narula.

Tickets range from $35 to $125 and are available online.

Eat Along the Street [TicketLeap]
Eat Along the Street [Official Site]

Manayunk’s MangoMoon to Morph

Owner and chef Moon Krapugthong is going to close her MangoMoon to make way for a new concept, Yanako, a Japanese-themed restaurant on the drawing board since last fall.

Ige San who was MangoMoon’s Chef in Residence this past December will be the Executive Chef at Yanako. The new restaurant’s cornerstone will be a sushi bar and there will also be a menu of “authentic, exotic and homestyle Asian cuisine.”

For all those hoping that this will be the answer to our izakaya and ramen dreams we have some bad news; beyond the sushi, sashimi and maki there will be udon and soba noodles but not necessarily ramen. Also, no liquor license so we’re still waiting for our real Japanese pub.

Krapugthong’s other Manayunk restaurant, Chabaa Thai is also expanding and will offer more room for private parties and special events.

MangoMoon will be open till April 9th and Yanako is aiming to open by Mother’s Day.

MangoMoon [Official Site]
Chabaa Thai [Official Site]

A Guide to Pad Thai


Philadelphia Weekly gives a history of Pad Thai and breaks down where to get it in Philadelphia.

Check their list of where to go whether you’re in 17th grade or have the trunk of an elephant.

PW’s Guide to Pad Thai [Philadelphia Weekly]

Thai In Manayunk

Chabaa Thai Bistro

Craig LaBan takes a look at Chabaa Thai on Main Street in Manayunk. He discovers the spot has come a ways from its original muffled flavors.

The two-year-old Chabaa Thai Bistro has blossomed into a beautiful space, a bilevel room draped in silk fabrics, with gold-leafed walls and art that pays homage to the culture and spiritual life of Thailand. From the earth plow and Buddha imagery on the first floor to the silken lanterns, bamboo fishing traps, and floating market photography on the larger second floor, Chabaa exudes exotic serenity – even when the space hums

Two Bells – Very Good

Chabaa Thai Bistro [Philadelphia Inquirer]
Chabaa Thai Bistro [Official Site]

If You Can’t Stand The Heat Skip This Contest

City Paper does what you do to interns, enter them in a spicy food eating contest.

Sam Tremble enters Chabaa Thai’s Spicy Contest and sets about training for the contest.

Training began Dec. 14, leaving me exactly two months before the registration deadline, plus a practice week before the final round. I started off with a handful of small green Thai chilies, a few long greens and two jalapenos raw while my roommate filmed my reaction with his digital camera. (I needed a stony expression if I wanted to win this thing.) But the kernel of my eventual failure was already planted: I had no poker face. Still, my ability to endure increased, and I built my tolerance for pain like a circuit drunk builds his route.

Could Sam win? Read on to find out.

Hot Pursuit [City Paper]