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“A Pleasant Surprise”

Bay Leaf Restaurant
Ranked #18 of 462 Restaurants in Allentown
Cuisines: American, French, Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, Late Night, Dinner, Reservations
Vandalia, Illinois
Level Contributor
22 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“A Pleasant Surprise”
Reviewed October 18, 2013

When I saw the name of this restaurant come up on our Garmin, I fancied something healthy and eclectic. One can eat healthy here, but their specialty is Asian. Our knowledgeable waiter Richard, who has worked there for 17 years, recommended the Thai Orange Salad for me. It was perfect since I didn't want anything heavy or large. Chicken, shrimp, oranges, peanuts, and toasted coconut were beautifully arranged in a mound and drizzled with a roasted chili vinaigrette. Staying with a lighter menu, I ordered an appetizer for my entree of Phyllo wrapped goat cheese with crab meat and asparagus alongside mixed greens in a rich, red wine vinaigrette. How could I forget that my husband and I started with a bowl of mushroom soup. The best I've ever had. Not overly creamy; more brothy. He stayed with their new American cuisine and ordered the NY strip steak w/blue cheese butter and lightly drizzled in a roasted shallot red wine sauce. It was cooked right to his specifications. The fresh vegetables were crunchy and tasty. The owner of 33 years is also the chef, and a great one he is!!!

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Sue H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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150 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    99
    36
    11
    2
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Montpelier, Vermont
Level Contributor
3 reviews
“Excellent Food”
Reviewed October 14, 2013

Had dinner at Bay Leaf tonight with my husband. We started by sharing the spring rolls and mixed green salad with apples and gorgonzola cheese. I had the chicken with shrimp and walnuts special and my husband had the stir fried siamese chicken. The vegetables were fresh, the meal was hot and the service was polite and prompt. I would definitely go back to the Bay Leaf.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank ASteeltownGirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Allentown, PA
Level Contributor
93 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Good, not great”
Reviewed October 13, 2013 via mobile

Definitely good Thai food, but not superior food. I was at Bay Leaf for a weekday lunch recently. The server seemed entirely uninterested in working at the restaurant - he never even asked if we would like something to drink, and I didn't even notice until he had already stepped away after taking our order at which time I decided that ice water was sufficient. Not good for business!
I had the lemongrass soup which was very tasty with a little bit of heat and nicely done shrimp. For my entree I had the Pad Thai - nicely done, but nothing special.
I was really expecting more based on some of the reviews as the "best" of Allentown, but all in all, this is a good restaurant with good food with old decor.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank housevet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, MA
Level Contributor
181 reviews
108 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
“Excellent Thai”
Reviewed September 14, 2013

We had a fine meal here, with a variety of Thai dishes -- we ate five appetizers -- and all were delicious. Our friends, who tried entrees, were similarly pleased. (For example, we had a salad with duck breast: the duck was perfectly cooked, you could actually taste duck! and the salad complemented it and didn't overwhelm it.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank MarkLOlson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
washington dc
Level Contributor
89 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“We didn't know what we were missing...”
Reviewed August 8, 2013

My husband and I have been going to Allentown every August for over 20 years and have NEVER been to this restaurant. We decided to try it based on Trip Advisor reviews and we were not disappointed. Located in down town Allentown, this little gem is worth a visit. We started with drinks and had wine with our entrees. I had the Mango Napoleon which was so unique and delicious. My husband had the fresh chicken and shrimp spring roll with peanut sauce and he raved about it. I had the cashew crusted Mahi Mahi and he had the Barramundi special. Both were amazing and the fresh vegetables were a great side. We split the peanut butter pie, which was ok. The service was attentive without being overbearing. The final tab was reasonable given what we had.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank lutzboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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