Five Star Restaurant is a good place to have an inexpensive meal that feels more upscale.
The restaurant's narrow, atriumlike space in the AlphaGraphics building is both spacious and warm, with rubbed, deep-tan walls, dining areas divided with wood pergolas that preserve the open ambience, and lots of Asian umbrellas, fans and tapestries livening up the walls. It feels both modern and rustic, a nice combination.
The food lives up to the nice atmosphere, with faithfully prepared Thai and Chinese favorites leavened with some more exotic offerings, such as squid salad and pineapple shrimp.
We started with the chicken sethek, or satay. Five Star's version is four sticks of lean, flavorful chicken lightly coated with spices and featuring a thick, sweet peanut sauce. We also tried the spring rolls, an extremely fresh blend of minced chicken, shrimp, steamed noodles and veggies wrapped in rice paper. They're served cool and cut in half to show off the colorful ingredients, ready to dip in the accompanying slightly spicy, sweet chili sauce or the wonderful cucumber sauce, tangy and full of cucumbers, onions and sweet red peppers.
For our main meal, we had the lunch special, me the Thai version and my husband the Chinese. Each features an entree, nicely sized for a satisfying but not-too-filling meal, plus fried or steamed rice, an egg roll and soup.
My husband had the savory yellow egg-drop soup with his almond chicken, which proved to be a great selection. Five Star's version is vibrantly colorful, slightly spicy and strongly flavored with plenty of halved almonds. He chose ham-fried rice with his meal, which was tasty, and full of ham and veggies, though a bit dry.
I had the gang keiw wand, a delicious, medium-hot green curry full of perfectly cooked zucchini and bamboo shoots. I had it with beef, which was tender, especially by Asian-food standards. To be honest, however, I wished I'd just had it veggie, so well did the coconut milk-based sauce set them off. The dish was especially good poured over the accompanying steamed rice.
Five Star has a good children's menu, offering a choice of Asian favorites like egg rolls or mandarin chicken, as well as such fallbacks as chicken nuggets and fries. Our kids dined mostly on the satay, one of their favorites, as well as a side dish of ham-fried rice.
For dessert, I had to have the khao neaw ma muang, otherwise known as mangoes with sticky rice. This is one of the all-time great desserts, the rice, gently flavored with coconut milk, and the cool mangoes providing a fresh, tart contrast.
For the summer, Five Star is offering a bunch of tantalizing-sounding mango dishes, from desserts to such entrees as sweet garlic mango chicken and green mango beef, all at reasonable prices.Appetizers $4.25-$6.75, soups and salads $6.25-$10.95, sides $3.75-$8, lunch combinations $4.95, dinner combinations $7.95, noodles $8.95, entrees $7.90-$11.95, desserts $2.95.
Rating: ** 1/2
Where: 268 S. State (second location at 5676 S. 1900 West, Roy)
Hours: Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Friday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Saturday, 3-10 p.m.
Payment: No checks acceptedPhone: 366-9366
Stacey Kratz is a free-lance writer who reviews restaurants for the Deseret Morning News. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org