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Try the coconut soup! First Coast Foodies goes to Thailand at Blue Orchid

When you take a step into Blue Orchid Thai Cuisine you take a step into Thailand.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Hey, Foodies!

First Coast Foodies checked out a new favorite spot beside Memorial Park in Riverside. When you take a step into Blue Orchid Thai Cuisine you take a step into Thailand.

"We want you to experience Thailand when you're here," said owner Jeff Schofield. "My wife of course is from Thailand and it was our vision to try to inspire people to love Thailand."

Blue Orchid Thai Cuisine on Riverside Avenue will keep your mind on the Thai flavors. First Coast Foodies hasn't stopped thinking about this first suggestion from Schofield on what to order.

"I tell everybody the best thing in this restaurant, and that's saying a lot because there's a lot of good stuff here," Schofield said. "But I think, world class, is a humble cup of soup. Our tom kah soup, it's a coconut soup is out of this world amazing."

Tom kah soup has a chicken broth with coconut milk, galanga, lemongrass, mushrooms, lime leaf, red onion, tomato, young coconut meat, and a protein of your choice. Schofield says they're traditionally made with straw mushrooms, but since they can't get those fresh here thy use oyster mushrooms.

The most popular dish is the pad Thai.

"Thirty-five percent maybe of every dish that comes out of our kitchen is pad Thai," Schofield said. "It's delicious. Here, it's on the sweeter side. We use a really high quality noodle."

But Schofield really wants you to try something else.

"The best entree dish that we have is our duck," he said. "We do an exceptional duck. You get half of a five pound duck on your plate."

Schofield also suggests the Panang curry.

"Our Panang is the way it's served in Bangkok," he said. "It's got 50 percent more protein than our regular entrees and no vegetables. It is exceptional, just the flavors. It's a little sweet and tangy. It's got this beautiful, lively flavor to it that's unmistakable."

The restaurant is carefully curated with nearly everything from Thailand including  artwork in the dining room with labels and an outdoor patio space Schofield calls their "wow" space.

Check out Blue Orchid's menu here.

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