Saap Ver Thai (San Francsco). Who'll TOFTT?

A couple more visits here were consistent with the above described- service improved a couple of weeks ago. We had a nice nam prik- the dipping sauce/paste with vegetables, as well as pad kee mow and crispy basil duck. I am not a fan of duck in Thai stir fries but this was tasty overall and I suspect the crispy pork belly version would be very good. Stopped in on the way back from the airport Sunday- apparently July 9 Saturday was their “Grand Opening”- the place was totally packed when we arrived, the crowd seemed to reflect the neighborhood better than my previous visits (younger, more diverse crowd, families etc.). The Pad Kraprao was excellent, my platonic ideal of this dish- minced chicken, strong base of fish sauce and garlic and the use of holy basil as opposed to the more common sweet Thai basil. Medium was plenty hot for me- I can’t really enjoy Thai Hot if it’s really hot to Thai tastes. Tom yum noodle was good again. Despite the crowd, our two dishes arrived with only a modest wait- I was somewhat afraid that it would take forever. Still enjoying this place.

I’ve been getting Saap Ver delivery via Uber Eats. Vibrant flavors in general, and the dishes we ordered showed no major degradation due to delivery. I’d recommend the:

Nam prik sausage dip
Thai sausage with crispy rice salad
Fish cakes
Grilled pork shoulder salad

The wok-fried cabbage nam pla was wonderful the first time we got it— tangy, full of umami and charred cabbage flavors. It had less than a tbs of dried shrimp and was similar to a Chinese charred cabbage dish. The second time we got it there was closer to 1/4 cup dried shrimp and the cabbage was lacking char, and had more limp leafy parts than the first time.

More generic stuff like spring rolls and duck red curry were fine and unremarkable, which is a few steps above the drek I’ve had delivered from neighborhood Thai places in the past.

Tried this place for the first time today with a large party. We tried:

THAI SAUSAGE WITH CRISPY RICE SALAD - ยําแหนมข้าวทอด
$12
Fermented Pork Sausage, Mint, Ginger, Peanuts, Red Onion, Green Onion, Cilantro

This was spicy and good. Dressing was quite sour, so it tasted more larb-like than the crispy rice salad at the Laotian places I’m used to (i.e. Vientienne in Oakland).

TOM SAAP PORK SPARE RIB SOUP - ต้มแซ่บกระดูกหมู
$16
Spicy Hot and Sour Soup With Slow Cooked Pork Spare Ribs, Roasted Rice Powder

Deep flavors and a very dense broth, this was almost curry-like in that it tasted good with rice. Pork ribs were tender.

GRILLED SALTED WHOLE TILAPIA FISH - ปลาเผาเกลือ
$29
Salt-Crusted Tilapia with Lemongrass, Grilled Eggplant, Tried-Spice Dipping Sauces

Large and beautiful, you have to peal away the skin which is far too salty. Unfortunately this came to the table very cold (i.e. seemed like it had been cooked way earlier and refrigerated). but when we sent it back to have them heat it up, it was decent. Not that amazing for me personally, though some dining companions loved it.

CHOO CHEE GOONG NANG - ฉู๋ฉี่กุ้งนาง
$18
Blue River Prawn, Creamy Coconut Curry Sauce, Kaffir Lime Leaf

Curry sauce was nice, but the Blue River prawns were somewhat small and chewy. I’d rather just have some tofu in that same curry sauce.

SPICY SHRIMP PASTE DIP WITH SIAMESE SARDINE - น้ำพริกกะปิ/ปลาทู
$25
Chili Paste, Lime Juice, Garlic, Deep-Fried Siamese Sardine

This item from the Nam Phrik Set section was good. Dip was very spicy for me, lots of veggies slightly blanched. This reminded me of the platters of veggies and dip I ate in Myanmar, and if you like this dish, this is a great place to get it.

GRILLED PORK SHOULDER - คอหมูย่าง
$12
Served With I-Saan Style Roasted Rice, Chili-Lime Sauce

Very nice version, tender meat.

Thai iced tea here is very strong and good. The version without milk (and with lemon instead) is very potent, but I liked it. I didn’t care for the Arnold Palmer.

This is a nice spot, and the items we chose made for a very different Thai meal than what I usually eat. I’d definitely return

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Bessarabsky Market, Kyiv. Ukraine
Credit: Juan Antonio Segal, Flickr