The hubs and I usually go to Branson once a year. We don’t go for the shows or the family-friendly, southern atmosphere. We go for the great sales in the outlets, for clothes. We usually go after Christmas, when the crowds die down (I hate crowds, traffic, people, you get it). Believe it or not there are great sales at this time, at least in the clothing stores.
The food scene has always been pretty disappointing, with choices of the same ole’ same ole’ chicken-fried, southern classics or burger diners. But the last couple of years have definitely improved Branson’s food scene. We are finally seeing more varied food cultures. This past trip, we ate at some of my new favorite restaurants anywhere, not just in Branson. Here’s the breakdown:
Thai Thai Cuisine
I love Thai food, and have had great Thai food in many places. I have also had bad Thai food. This was one of the best Thai food experiences I have ever had. I know, I can’t believe I can get fantastic Thai food in Branson, but it’s true!
The environment is really nice….especially for Branson. Everything looks new, the dinner ware is on the higher end. There are waterfalls throughout, so that nice sound creates a calm, romantic atmosphere. However, it isn’t so nice that jeans and a t-shirt will make you feel awkward.
This appetizer was delicious and worth the $7.99. The tender chicken was very juicy and flavorful, but it was even better dipped in the house-made peanut sauce, which was creamy and perfectly peanut-y. A surprise was the cucumber and carrot salad that came along with the appetizer. It was refreshingly sweet and complimented so well with the tiny bit of spice from the chicken and peanut sauce. I will get this again!
Tom Kahkai Soup
I am a sucker for a great tom kahkai soup, but I am very picky about them. I like them creamy, with many veggies and tender meat (or tofu). This one was pretty good! It came with chicken, onions, mushrooms, lemongrass, galaga, kaffir leaves, and cilantro. The flavor and creaminess were on point! Lots of flavor, with the coconut milk giving it sweetness, but there was definitely a spicy heat too it as well. I loved all of the veggies, especially the mushrooms. The only complaint was that the chicken was very dry, overcooked. Also, this was $10.99. While it is huge, there were no leftovers. If I get this again, I will order it with tofu instead of chicken.
A good curry is one of my favorite things to eat. This panang curry was pretty great. I ordered this with tofu. The tofu pieces were entirely too large. I prefer smaller bites. It included kaffir leaf, bell peppers and onions on a bed of spinach. The panang curry sauce looks slight in the picture, but there was plenty of it. I got a good amount of the sauce with each bite. The sauce was sweeter than other curries, with a mild peanut taste. I loved it.
The side salad that came with it had a house-made ginger dressing, which was creamy and delicious. At $12.99, this hugely portioned dish was well worth it.
There are so many great reviews of this place online, so I assumed it would be very good. Well, you know what they say about assuming…EnvironmentThis place is very large! It has a line you enter to order your food. When it is ready, you go pick it up. It has plenty of places to sit and it also has an international market that includes products from around the world, like foods from Germany and Italy. That was pretty fun to look through.
Pick 2 Combo
For lunch, Drew and I both decided on the pick 2 combo, which costs $7.99. First off, it took 20 minutes to get our food, and we were one of the only people there. Come on people, it is a sandwich!
I decided on the half tuna sandwich on rye bread with the tomato bisque. The tuna lacked flavor and there was hardly any tuna salad on the sandwich. So, the bread to tuna ratio was way off. However, I enjoyed the seemingly fresh leaf lettuce, tomato, and red onion.
The tomato bisque tasted cheesy, so you know I hated it. It was very creamy, too, so definitely not a healthier option.
Drew decided on the curry chicken salad sandwich and a side salad. The curry chicken salad was much more flavorful than my tuna salad. Though, it was pretty one noted. What note was that? Curry. Lots of curry, and not the kind with any spice.
The best part of our meal was Drew’s side salad. It had lots of fresh veggies and he got the raspberry vinagrette…wow! That really was tasty! It tasted fresh, so I think this was made in house. It was sweet and creamy, with just a little tang of vinegar.
The worst part of the meal was our cups of water. I swear they clean the water dispenser out with bleach because our water tasted and smelled just like bleach. So, we were parched during our meal. Overall, I was not impressed with this place in the least. I will not be back.
Momo Sushi and Grill
Hallelujah! FINALLY, there is a fantastic sushi place in Branson! They have tried for years, but I have been disappointed in every other Japanese/ sushi restaurant in the area. But this one….YES!
The environment is perfect for a Japanese restaurant. Modern, clean, yet simple. The picture above is only of the room we dined in. We were eating very early. There were many other diners in other sections of the restaurant, though.Sushi
We decided to hit the sushi hard…no need to waste time on starters. However, we were surprised when the waitress brought us miso soup, which is a free starter for everyone. Nice! And it was delicous, very flavorful and not watered down like so many miso soups I have had.
Now the rolls!
The Crazy Roll: Tempura shrimp roll topped with crab, fried shrimp, and spicy sauce. $10.95
This was a lighter, fresh roll. It was the least flavorful, but still a good roll. But I will not get this again.
Tempura California Roll: A california roll deep-fried. $6.95
Amazing! So simple, yet they put spicy mayo and eel sauce all over it, and the veggies inside were so fresh and crisp. I will always get this roll.
Kobe Roll: California roll topped with baked crab, scallop, Parmesan cheese, sauce, masago. $10.95 (I ordered this without the parmesan, of course)
THE BEST. Only in San Diego have I had a roll like this was hot, baked scallops and shrimp on the top. This was as good as when I had it in CA. The contrast of cold and hot, spicy and sweet..I was in heaven. My fav roll ever.
Finally, the service is impeccable here. The hostess and waitress were so kind and helpful. The hostess even brought us two extra dipping sauces with no extra charge.
I will always come eat here when I’m in Branson!
Extra short review: India Clay Oven
This has been my favorite Indian buffet for three years now. The food is always so fresh, so flavorful! However, when we walked in on a Saturday for the lunch buffet, they said they no longer do the lunch buffet. I am not sure if this is only on the weekends or for all days of the week? And I can’t find that information online.
Anyway, if you ever get a chance to eat the lunch buffet there, you will not regret it.
(Sorry for no pic, when they said no lunch buffet I walked out about to cry)
If you have any great dining experiences in Branson, please share them in the comments.