Malden just got a new Thai restaurant: Crying Thaiger (more on this great name later) opened last week at 114 Ferry St., as confirmed by owner Usanus Siri. The space was previously home to a Chinese restaurant called the Great Chow.
According to a post on the restaurant’s Facebook page, “crying tiger” is the name of a Thai dish of grilled beef brisket topped with a spicy, tangy, pungent sauce, hence the punny name for the restaurant. As for how the dish got the name in the first place, the restaurant shares three legends that may explain it:
- The first involves a hungry tiger stealing a cow from a village and eating most of the cow — but feeling too full to eat the brisket, an “extraordinary part of meat which was tender and juicy.” This caused the tiger to cry from frustration.
- Theory #2 compares the fat marbles in beef to tiger stripes. “When the brisket was on a hot grill, oil from the fat dripped from the meat down the grill,” the restaurant writes, “which resembled the tears. Hence it seemed like the tiger was crying.”
- And finally, the third explanation, which Crying Thaiger describes as “slightly less convincing,” is simply that the dipping sauce is so hot that it made a tiger cry.
Along with its namesake dish, Crying Thaiger serves an entire “crying section,” including dishes featuring grilled chicken, grilled pork, grilled salmon, grilled vegetables, and grilled tofu.
Though it’s a small sample size, the user reviews have been sterling so far, with one Google reviewer describing it as “probably the best Thai food in the Boston area.” Head down to Ferry Street to check out the fiery jaew sauce and to take in the legend of the crying tiger.
The restaurant’s hours are slightly reduced for now (11:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.), along with the menu, but starting with a grand opening celebration on Friday, October 27, hours will be extended until 9:30 p.m., and the menu will expand. Crying Thaiger is closed on Tuesdays.