Last Monday, the long awaited campus location was unveiled in the Hub. Diana Hall takes a toll of student reactions to the new King, while Eyeopener Editors participate in an epic taste test
Since its Sept. 19 opening, Salad King’s on-campus kiosk has served its first customers, with mixed reviews revealing a student wish for more meal options at the Hub’s branch of the Thai food connoisseur.
“I’d honestly rather just get take out from Salad King, so then I can choose what I want that day and how spicy I want it,” said second-year occupational health and safety student Ulrica Wong. “Everything is set here, so there’s not much of a choice.”
“I wish there was a little more variety,” agreed fellow second year health and safety student Sabrina Tonima.
The original focus for the “King at the Court” was to find a way to balance the desire for the cuisine from the Yonge Street location with the practicality of keeping the dishes as fresh as possible at Ryerson.
Tonima acknowledged this compromise in food preparation, and said she was satisfied with the Bangkok stir-fry and spring roll dish from the Hub. Tonima awarded the meal with a four out of five rating.
“We haven’t been able to see a trend yet (in terms of dish preferences),” said Alan Lui, general manager of Salad King, of the three-dish-a-day menu. “We’re still refining the menu and we’re open to feedback.”
Lui said the kiosk location will be looking at changing the food options in late October.
They will also be dropping one server position at the front of the kiosk until the winter weather encourages students and staff to use this “more convenient and faster way to get a hold of Salad King food”.
Wong and Tonima were both careful to point out their preference for location over food quality.
Tonima emphasized that she preferred “the caf atmosphere, because it’s so hard to get a seat (at 340 Yonge St.) especially at around lunch time, because they’re always busy and they always rush you. You have to sit beside random people.”
Lui admitted the kiosk hasn’t eased up the long lines at the main restaurant.
He attributed the smaller amount of customers lining up at the Hub to the number of students, mainly those in first year, who have never had Thai food before, “let alone Salad King.”
Keeping that in mind, the staff at the Eyeopener put three of the Hub’s choices up against the real Salad King:
Hot Thai Noodles with Chicken
$9.00 at Salad King vs. $8.49 at the Hub
Overall, the orginal King’s more obviously cooked noodles won out with our staff.
Golden Tofu (vegetarian option)
$8.00 at Salad King vs. $8.49 at the Hub
The Hub’s tofu hadn’t emusified enough, making it bland and mushy and leaving the old King a clear winner at the Eye.
$1.60 at Salad King vs. $1. 50 at the Hub
The Hub spring roll won out, as it was easier to taste all the ingredients than in the King’s roll.