|Pad thai (fore) and rice & chicken satay (back) from The Small Lemongrass|
Is that something usual to do? You tell me.
Where did I find such thing, you say? Meet The Small Lemongrass, the younger sister of The Tall Lemongrass, Crows Nest. You may think it's too isolated to be noticed as they snuggles at the Devonshire Tunnel, which connects UTS' Building 6 and ABC building to Central Station, but judging from how packed it is during lunch time, I think they have picked a great spot.
|The Small Lemongrass, Devonshire Tunnel|
The glass windows are covered by articles about the owner and the Tall Lemongrass, as well as the extensive but not complicated menu.
|Articles and menu|
The restaurant is sharing the space with Limelight Gallery. Although I am still figuring out about the symbiosis of this partnership, there are some good art pieces you can browse on.
There aren't that many seating, but the ambiance is quite comforting still. That is, if you don't really mind the noise. The interior isn't decorated heavily, but it still looks elegant and artistic, thanks to all of the pictures and sleek wooden furniture.
I was there for a quick catch up with a friend before the next class began. Our food came quite quickly, and although it was crowded and busy, we didn't feel like being rushed. Brownie points for that.
Both of us opted for lunch special menus, which stay on the $8.5 mark. Browsing through the whole menu, their a la carte options aren't that cheap, and I noticed that most patrons ordered the lunch special dishes.
Rice with chicken satay doesn't appear like my expectation; the satay is not meat in skewers, they are more like chicken chunks covered in sweet and thick peanut sauce. Although I still prefer Indonesian's spicy and rich peanut sauce that usually comes with the satays, this one is more than decent and perfectly paired with well-cooked rice. The chicken is tender and still retains some moisture as well.
|Lunch special: rice with chicken satay - $8.5|
Pork pad thai is always a safe harbour for me at a Thai restaurant, and they do it pretty well. Well-cooked ingredients, tasty sweet-sour coating on the noodles, and good amount of beansprouts. A squeeze of the lemon wedge zing the dish up even more.
|Pork pad thai - $8.5|
An unusual thing was the white sugar on the corner of my plate. I'd never encountered this before, which made me wonder if this was a mistake from the kitchen. I am used to sugar in my pad thai, not on the side. Can somebody enlighten me about this? I tried to Google but it suggested that the usual practice is just put the sugar into the wok. Anyhow, the pad thai is already sweet enough without any additional sugar.
|Sugar on my pad thai|
Overall, I reckon this is a nice place to grab some decent Thai dishes if you're in a rush. Just a few days ago I also noticed that they have added a hot meal counter, which says $8.5 a portion. I'm assuming that you can choose the dishes from the metal trays on the counter and pack it up for takeaway.
|Cute & extremely detailed figurines|
And how cute are those figurines? Amazing detailed work. You can even see the name of the soy sauce bottle there!
Currency: $1 = IDR 10,500
Rating: 3/5 (Worth the try)
Good lunch special dishes with student-friendly price (can't really tell the same about the other a la carte dishes, though), ambiance is OK and quite comfy, service is quick.
THE SMALL LEMONGRASS
Shop 7-10, 827 George St
Ultimo, NSW 2007
Phone: (02) 9212 1935