Seattle >Food & Dining > Tamarind Tree
1036 S Jackson St Ste A, Seattle, WA | Directions 9810447.599340 -122.318050
10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily
Neighborhoods: Downtown, Yesler Terrace
Sabotage – It looks like Tamarind Tree is being sabotoged by a single reviewer with an axe to grind for some reason. It's the only explanation for the numerous 1 star ratings.
I'm not a restaurant critic, but I do write published columns about food. Over the past five years I have eaten probably 20 times at TT and have never once been disappointed. The food is fresh and tasty and an enormous value. Service is always at least passable and often excellent. The setting is classy and comfortable. Please, please, do not believe the horribly slanderous reviews posted here.
Not bad,but there's better – I've dined here many times over the years and really only go because I'm forced to by events hosted here. Personally, I prefer other Vietnamese joints for the same food and with better prices. Service is pretty good but mostly feels forced for extra tips. I wont be going there unless I have to.
Puzzled about bad reviews - guess I'll have to try it again! – Sure the parking is bad, and sure I've seen a couple of rodents by the dumpsters, but it really cracks me up when all these white folk come to the International District and complain about all the white folk in the restaurant as a sure sign of unauthentic Viet food, in the same breath as they complain about the "trashy" exterior of the Vietnamese grocer next door and the vermin filled parking lot. You can't have it both ways! Have you been to Viet Nam lately? That is as authentic as it gets folks! Rodents and all, as of this March, when I was last there. And I loved every rodent-infested moment of it! Get a grip.
Being half Vietnamese myself, with a mom who cooks delicious food, I can honestly say that I've had nothing but good, and mostly great, food here. Sure, sometimes there are deviations from "traditional" Vietnamese food, but last I checked, we're in Seattle, not Saigon, guys. The green papaya salad is delicious, especially with the lemongrass tofu, as is the bun thit nuong, banh cuon dac biet, and satays.
Regarding the service, yes they are rushed off their feet in the evenings and weekends, and I go into the experience expecting a long wait if I don't make a reservation. But guess what naysayers? You can make a reservation! Online! And choose your table! Wow! How hard is that? I've mostly gotten served promptly, I have yet to see anyone get yelled at while eating here, there is even an American server currently who speaks Vietnamese (cool!), and the restrooms have always been just fine.
My main complaint would be the price of the drinks. They sound delicious, but I usually steer clear because the prices seem pretty steep compared to the price of the food dishes. The lychee drinks are good though!
I honestly wish that all the restaurant snobs and wannabe critics would stop coming and leave the experience more enjoyable for me!
Restaurant really went down – I just went and had dinner here with a group of friends last night. Foods were so horrible and overpriced! Do not order anything from the cocktail menu! My lychee martini tasted like cough syrup! Wait staff is better, but overall, the foods were so horrible and all the sauces for dipping were overly sweet! Very disappointed and highly recommend that people go to a real Vietnamese restaurant. This restaurant is all hype and zero substance when it comes to foods.
Unauthentic, Bad Food; Poor Service; French Fries??? – I was here on a lunch meeting with a business associate and our request for a large table was not greeted with enthusiasm. The stuffed squid appetizer was overcooked. When we actually ordered our main courses, I had ordered the Special Steamed Rice Rolls - one of my favorites. 15 minutes later, they bring out my colleague's pho. He politely waited for me to be served. 5 minutes later, I'm urging him to eat otherwise his pho would be no good. Still no food for me. I called the waitress - she seemed to have forgotten about my food. She leaves and comes back to tell me that they only had half a portion of the steamed rice rolls and it was not very good so they don't want to serve it. Would I like to substitute with steamed pork rolls instead. Why didn't they know this fifteen minutes ago??? Do I have choice? A few minutes later, she placed a plate in front of me that left me speechless. The plate was covered with grilled pork on one side and cooked beansprouts on the other. On the side was a whole pile of FRENCH FRIES and a lone, grilled shrimp. My first response: "What the h--- is this on my plate??" For those who don't know , this dish is suppose to have plump, steamed rice rolls stuffed with a ground pork mixture. It is served with pork roll, steamed bean sprouts, herbs, and fish sauce (dipping sauce). The special may have grilled pork but it must have banh cong ( a deep fried "shrimp bread"). My rice rolls were flat and there only 3 of them (buried underneath all that other stuff) which would not have satisfied my 5 year-old but more importantly, what the heck was french fries doing on my plate!!!!!! I am sooooo offended I took it all off my plate.
I'm grateful it was not my business associate who picked the place. I will never go back. There's just no excuse for serving food to paying customers like it was a pile of leftovers you needed to get rid of. The owners/chef should be ashamed for serving pseudo-vietnamese food. The nice decor is just lipstick on a pig.
The owner shouldn't be there if he can't change the way he t – Bad place, way too expensive, not very good service but food was decent
Slow, horrible, indifferent service; too bad because the food is decent – After TWO prior bad service experiences, we decided to give this place a third and, as it turned out, final chance. The food is overall good, and we had out-of-town visitors who were craving Vietnamese food.
It took forever to get a waiter to come over and take our order. Most of our party ordered Pho's, and when they finally came, we had to ask twice for the veggie sides that are supposed to come along with the soup. My chicken plate was inexplicably delayed and, when asked a few times, the waiter kept promising me that it was coming. When I finally gave him a deadline, the food magically appeared. In the meantime, my wife had found a thick hair in her pho.
After all this, we asked to see the manager. After a while the waiter came back and told us that the manager did not want to talk to us, excusing him for his bad English. But judging from other recent reviews here, I now realize that this manager has no business running a mainstream restaurant. The waiter did take the both plates off the tab, but by then it was too late to salvage the horrible experience. We're usually very understanding of snafus at restaurants, but this place takes it to an art form.
AVOID THIS PLACE! – We took a chance , the food wasn't that good, service was rude and disrespectful. Overpriced .
When we complained management could care less. I would avoid this Place there are a lot better places in the area where the food is much better and they appreciate your business. Now that we called back to complain and they have our number they won't stop calling us. Very rude people.
Wasn't going to write a review, but... – I have been to Tamarind Tree once, long ago to dine in the restaurant. I thought it was good. This posting is for the last time I ordered.
I recently placed an order and went in to pick it up. The order was not placed when it was called in. I waited an additional 45 minutes for the order which should have been ready when I arrived to pick it up. After taking it as a treat to my sister and brother-in-law, my sister noticed the beef salad tasted off. She ended up throwing it away because the salad tasted like the meat was turning. But she saved the other left overs to have for dinner that night. They started eating the left overs when my sister said she saw something strange in the dish. Upon closer inspection, there was strands of what appeared to be human hair about an inch long mixed in with the food. She could not believe what she was seeing so she took them out an pulled them between her finger nails and the strands curled. Just like hair would do. What was unusual was the hair appeared blond. There are no blond servers or kitchen staff that we are aware of.
Given this experience, we no longer patronize Tamarind Tree. After reading some of the negative experience of others who posted here and their observation of the treatment of the staff, I would not be surprised if this restaurant is being sabotaged by its workers.
Very bad food and manager/owner was screaming and cursing staff – The food here is very overpriced, especially compared to the many fine local Vietnamese places along Jackson St. I lived in Dalat so I know the cuisine and this is not true, authentic Vietnamese food. It is designed to get white people to pay more for something they cannot tell is NOT Vietnamese cuisine. The worst of it all though is the manager who was screaming at the various servers. She was a shrill banshee and her tantrums only spoiled the mood (we speak Viet and she was insulting and cursing her staff for a variety of silly things.) Combine this horrific shreaking with inauthentic Vietnamese food and we were very put off. What a waste! You should avoid this place. DO NOT give this boorish family your money!!
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