logoEat - Drink - Protest

A culture blog by Lauren Girardin, a San Francisco-based city girl who eats out and kicks about.

October 12, 2003

Chile Lemon Garlic (CLG) . . . . . . . . . . restaurant review

3166 24th Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

Surrounded by the abundant taquerias and Salvadorian papuserias of the 24th Street corridor, Chili Lemon Garlic – a.k.a. CLG – brings dazzling Thai food to the Mission. A coffee counter for both espresso drinks and Thai iced tea abuts the front entrance. The decor is the same chintzy but oddly comforting style of many local Thai restaurants: white table cloths, iconographic statues, light rock radio, and dreadful knick-knacks. No matter, as the aromas of coconut and spice suggest that an impressive meal awaits.

The traditional food surpasses expectations, from a tongue-tingling Jungle Curry freshened with lemon leaves and basil to a Larb salad of minced meat, onions, mint, lemongrass and a sharp lime dressing. Pad Thai, the true test of any Thai restaurant's competence, is a perfect plate of chewy noodles. On a sunny day, nab a seat in CLG’s backyard patio, a unique respite from the grime of the neighborhood.