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Once a month, I get to dine out and catch up with my fabulous book club girls, plus we throw in some book talk, as little or as much as we feel like. In May, we all met at Bangkok Bay located in Solana Beach. It was the first visit for all of us so we were excited to try out this place.

First off, you pass by a lot of greenery before you open the front door to the restaurant. There's more leafy pams that you can't see in the picture above.

The decorations inside are very earthy and inviting. Next to our booth was a very cozy table with bench seating and colorful seat pillows!

On the table there was a very cute spice and sauce holder.

Since we were doing family style, we decided to order the Tom Yum with tofu, in the "fire pot" size. This was about double the price of the "bowl" but could feed a lot more people!

Here's my portion. The five of us each ate a bowl of this size and there was enough left over for one extra bowl. I like the simplicity of a dish like this. The soup broth is rather typical and I like the texture and shape of the tofu in here, holds its shape but easy to eat. I especially like that there were mushrooms in the mix.

This is the Som Tom, which is the papaya salad. It has a heavier fish-sauce taste along with the shredded papaya strips. The dish was slightly chilled which kept it refreshing though I still am not a big fan of this dish in general. The girls enjoyed it.

The Pad See Ew chicken here was good but it just didn't have that spark that I wanted for the flavor. I do like the egg bits because they seemed to have that browned quality to them that I wish were on the noodles. It's a simpler feeling soy sauce but I wanted just a little more oomph.

Above is the Hot Basil Tofu. The vegetables here are at a medium crisp cooked and worked fine but I like mine a little more cooked. There was a good sprinkling of basil sauted in here. The tofu is also decent but I still prefer chicken or another meat.

Since I've been eating more thai lately, especially Panang Curry, I'm starting to get a little mixed up on the different versions. I think I like most chicken panang other than Koon Thai, which had sauce that was a bit thick in my opinion. The green beans had a little resistance which is a nice texture for this sauciness. The sauce had a tad bit of heat but I'm glad it wasn't more than I could handle. This was my favorite of the dishes.

Here's Mango Sticky Rice. I don't think I would have ever eaten this on my own but since the group wanted to share a dessert, this was the selection. Oh man, sticky rice is pretty tasty with the condensed milk on it. The mango fruit was just ripe so it was still firm and good to nibble on. Maybe I'll give it a try at other places next time!

It's a cute comfortable place to visit and the company was good so I had a pleasant time. The girls really loved dining here since there are very few good Thai restaurants in the area. Even though I didn't like everything, there are plenty of other items to explore on the menu for a second visit.

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Bangkok Bay
731 S Hwy 101 #1B
Solana Beach CA 92075
(858) 792-2427

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