We came for lunch on the weekend. Only us and one other table, gee that's really sad the Pearl is really empty now without alcohol license. With this lovely outdoor patio it should be heaving with weekend lunchers. Having said that it's pretty expensive for just a weekend drop in lunch, maybe they could try and a simple set lunch menu to get a few more punters in! So often in Doha the owner wants to keep prices elitist to attract locals but the restaurants are empty most of time, drop your prices are get your profit from turning tables! We were given a warm welcome, surprised that none of the floor staff were actually Thai or South East Asian, tried to see if the chef was but couldn't see him! Nervous. When the lady took our beverage order we tried to order our mains too but she didn't want to and just walked off. Despite only 4 customers (including us) it took a good 5mins to get anyone's attention as they chatted at the bar or waited with their back turned at the front door. Eventually I just called out to the door lady to take our food order, she looked a bit miffed as I think she was designated door not food order. Curries were around the 60-80QAR, soft drink 12 but out there was a juice for something like 32QAR. It was about 250ml of beetroot, carrot, apple, total ingredient cost about 3QAR if that! Can you imagine half the cost of a complicated meat curry in a 250ml glass of juice?? Just doesn't make sense?? We had the mixed platter, duck pineapple curry and green seafood curry, and rice is extra. All the food tasted lovely, perhaps just a bit too rich in oil (it was floating all over the top of the duck curry) and coconut cream. The curries were just a lot heavier than we remember food in Thailand being, maybe that's a local adaptation. One thing is nice is the presentation, eating with your eyes! Oh and I really loved the real Kaffir lime leaves and chunks of herbs and spice, wasn't just a puree. The appetiser platter had some lovely morsals, the chicken in pandana leaves very nice and sauces good too. He seemed intent we don't eat the pandana leaf, which we knew but I'm guessing he's had previous customers who have given it a go! Papaya salad was just georgeous and fresh. When the table was cleaned we tried to ask for the bill, but she didn't hear us as she was having a part way conversation with her friend at the bar. Although it was a one off we were also put off by the other table who just let their 2 children run around the restaurant like idiots. Why is that in Qatar, in the UK they wouldn't dump their kids on the wait staff, why do they do it here? It's so rude and disrespectful as if the the restaurant is their living room? I don't want to eat in their living room, I want to eat in resturant! I'm not sure I would come back, might try it with a bunch of friends at night if an alcohol license is returned because it's pretty expensive for a drop in lunch, so more of special occasion. If there's no license I think I'd rather just go to Thai Snack for lunch and pay a quarter of the price for some "rustic" Thai food. Having said all that, do try it, it might just what your looking for, I really like seeing SE Asian food started to creep up in Doha, I really miss it, coming from OZ!
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