So yesterday was like the perfect storm for free food. Our regional manager was in town, two people from our office are moving on to new jobs (including GastroBoy) which meant a goodbye lunch, and someone reminded me that Typhoon! had a downtown location. As the office social chair, I set lunch up.

Typhoon! is a Portland-based regional Thai food chain. The locations used to each have special menus, which appears to no longer be the case. The set-up in all of them is up-scale, with elegant interior decoration that is generally minimalist in order to allow the food to be the spotlight. Presentation is important here, but not as important as taste.

Typhoon! is well-known for the tea selection. The menu is vast in that regard, and I usually find it intimidating. Since yesterday was warm, I opted for Pellegrino.

Our group of nine people split a couple of "Nibble Platters" for appetizers. Given the number of people sharing, I fought my natural urge to grab one-of-each from them and instead limited myself to a chicken skewer, a half a spring roll, and a small nibble that I simply can't describe. I was later given a shrimp wonton that otherwise would've gone to waste. All were very, very good.

For lunch I ordered the General's Noodles. I usually opt for Pad Thai, but decided to branch out into something new. The General's Noodles are a thinner rice noodle (similar to angel hair pasta) served with shrimp and chicken, topped with a combination of crushed red pepper, crushed peanuts, lime, and garlic (along with some spices I couldn't pinpoint) and a wonton on the side. I think I would've been happier with the Pad Thai, but with the crushed peanuts, my lunch was close enough in spirit to be satisfying. It wasn't particularly filling, though.

General's Noodles

Everyone at the table was very happy with their selections, and they covered a wide range of the menu, so from that I'd say this is a safe place to take anyone with the assurance that they'll enjoy the food. I never saw the bill, but I'd imagine from the menu that the nine of us cost about $150. Not horrible, given the nibble platters.

Typhoon! is excellent, though I prefer Sweet Basil when it comes to Thai, and there are other places I've yet to try. The food is not disappointing, there are several locations (including downtown, NW Portland, Gresham, and Beaverton) and the prices are quite reasonable given the quality of the cuisine.

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