what: matzah ball tom kha
where: Baan Sawan Thai Bistro, 2135 Devine St., 252-8992
Before I get to this week’s Bite, an anecdote: The first time I sat at the bar for a meal at Baan Sawan, a wind-up toy marched across the glass toward me, coming to a stop on my menu. I was perplexed. It came from the direction of a couple sitting down the bar from me, who had an array of tasting glasses in front of them. They were having a great time chatting with Baan Sawan partner and sommelier Sam Suaudom. About the same time, I noticed that the bar itself was not just a heavy wood and glass case, but an astroturf-laden diorama of googley-eyed toys and figurines, including a scene of some cows being abducted by aliens. This wasn’t my first visit. I’d had some great meals at tables in the dining room, but this was the first time I understood the unique mix of fine food, wine, wit and whimsy that defines the Baan Sawan experience. And now for the Bite: a first-course special combining luxuriously soft, Ashkenazi-style matzah balls made with duck schmaltz, along with a traditional Thai tom kha soup. It paired beautifully with a glass of Zestos Rosado, a complex Spanish rosé made from Garnacha ($9.50), full of minerality.
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