Dear Jitlada, you win. We Surrender.
I woke up this morning with a black tongue and my stomach precariously balanced between the volatile states of seizure and bleeding.
I like to think that I have an iron stomach; sushi for breakfast, wine/beer/tequila/scotch consecutively, food marathoning in general. Jitlada successfully cracked said iron with a blunt blow to my stomach in the form of their southern Thai masterpiece, Phat(tha)lung-style spicy, tumeric-flavoured, dry curry with beef. It's one of those perfectly spicy and delicious dishes that relentlessly harms the body as quickly as it satisfies the tongue and heightens the senses. We ordered it as spicy as they could make it, and for the record, the vegetables on the side don't help. The song "Hurts So Good" by John Cougar Mellencamp is the first that comes to mind (and I must be delirious from the spice to be quoting John Cougar Mellencamp).
The recently translated southern Thai menu has lead us back to Jitlada, not that we ever doubted their excellence. We'd been making the Thai Town rounds for the past two years, most recently abandoning Torung for their lack of ability to properly hurt us. At Palms, back when we were regulars, they brought the spice to a satiating level. Ruen Pair did too. However, neither did it with the friendliness or power that Jitlada did. Jitlada's matriarch has been more hospitable than any other restaurant we've visited, while at the same time serving the painful level of spice we require.
I'm not sure about the black tongue but I know we'll return to Jitlada, possibly tonight. I'm also pretty sure my stomach will be fine... or at least I hope.