Posted by on Jun 19, 2015 in Downtown, Neighborhood Favs, Reviews, Thai
1417 South 1st St.
Austin, TX 78704
(512) 326-1999
Sun-Wed: 11am-10pm
Thu-Sat: 11am-11pm




I’ve heard Alexis Chong’s delightful restaurant on South 1st called many things: Modern Thai, Thai Fusion, Eclectic Thai, et al. Well, you get the idea. The only thing I’m prepared to call Sway is fantastic. What a restaurant. The lack of a readable sign is about the only fault I have with this place.

The appetizers are a study in creativity, texture, and subtly delightful flavors. When I first tried the Shu Mai (usually found on Chinese dim sum carts) I was impressed. No question there was a different vibe to Sway’s version but it was impressive nonetheless. The melange of pork, shrimp, fermented beans and chili vinegar were so good that I’ve probably ordered it at least five times. The Wild Boar Ribs are another study in careful preparation and tasty execution. You want tender with just a hint of heat, then this is your dish. I thought it would be dry, but not the case! The Satay is another combination of a revered Thai theme: the charcoal grilled pork and shrimp blend with tofu, kewpie mayo, and red chili peanut sauce. The result: the flavors all nicely coalesce. 2nd result: you will order this again.

The stir fry dishes at Sway are not the usual ones you see at most Thai places. But I’m intrigued by their originality and of course the layers of flavor in each dish. The General Kong’s Quail features tender quail along with Chinese broccoli and the classic and ubiquitous nahm prik pao, a delightful chili paste. The sum total is serious taste.

Also like the Phat Phrik Khing. This dish literally screams out the requisite Thai flavor components wrapped around pork loin, snow peas, shitake mushrooms (a real scene stealer) and sweet soy, Fresno chili and toasted almond all add up to a wonderfully aromatic dish.

What would any kind of Thai persuasion be without a curry or two? I have become quite fond of the Green Curry which again, varies from the conventional Thai presentations we’re used to in Austin. This dish is a masterpiece of creativity! Imagine pressed tofu, English peas, fingerling potatoes, baby corn, Thai Eggplant and pickled Fresno chili. The flavors come at you in unrelenting waves of outrageous taste like the shore at the Bay of Fundy with its famous tidal bore.

The pad dishes are equally up to the task and again, with another clever variation on a standard theme, Chong has created Pad Kwetio. This dish is so good it ingeniously blends flat noodles with pork bellies along with Chinese broccoli, tofu and an obviously thick black wok water. The flavors are astonishing and each bit leaves a bit of sadness with it as the dish disappears!

As noted earlier, you could use many names to describe to the cuisine at Sway. How about we just stick to amazing? What a fabulous addition to the Bouldin Creek dining scene.


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