Every year, from April 13th to the 15th, many folks around the world celebrate the Thai New Year (Thai: สงกรานต์ Songkran).
According to Wikipedia, the Thai New Year “…
is also celebrated in Laos (called pi mai lao or ‘Lao New Year‘ in Lao), Cambodia, Myanmar (where it is called Thingyan), and by the Dai people in Yunnan, China. Sri Lanka also celebrates a similar festival called Sinhalese and Tamil New Year on the same dates. The same date is celebrated widely throughout the Indian subcontinent, albeit based on the astrological event of the sun beginning its northward journey.
The date of the festival was originally set by astrological calculation, but it is now fixed. If these days fall on a weekend, the missed days off are taken on the weekdays immediately following. Songkran falls in the hottest time of the year in Thailand, at the end of the dry season. Until 1888 the Thai New Year was the beginning of the year in Thailand; thereafter 1 April was used until 1940. 1 January
is now the beginning of the year. The traditional Thai New Year has been a national holiday since then…”
For this year’s New Year, you can join in the celebration by enjoying a pre-fixe menu at Pho Republique (on Washington Street, in the South End) for the 3-day event. According to their press release:
“…From April 13, 2008 – April 15, 2008 Chef Arnond, and Pho Republique, will be celebrating Songkran (สงกรานต์), the three-day Thai New Year Festival of his homeland. Guests of the restaurant during these three days will be treated to the additional option of celebrating with a special Pre Fixe Songkran Supper menu including dessert and a traditional Thai water blessing**!
The Pre Fixe Menu is as follows:”
Sunburst Pomelo (Asian Grapefruit) Salad with Jumbo Shrimp (Yum Som O)
or Barbeque Lemongrass Beef Salad
Chang Mai Noodle (Khow Soy)
Yellow noodles in yellow curry with pickle vegetables topped with crispy noodles
or Spicy Cashew Chicken
Banana and Coconut cake with Thai basil Ice cream (followed by Water Blessing)
The cost for Pho Republique’s Songkran Supper is $35.00 per person and you may opt out of the water blessing should you wish to remain dry! For reservations please call 617-262-0005. Walk-ins welcome.
**What is a water blessing you might ask? Well, according to Wikipedia: “…The most obvious celebration of Songkran is the throwing of water. People roam the streets with containers of water or water guns, or post themselves at the side of roads with a garden hose and drench each other and passersbys…”
Sounds like it could be interesting… AND yummy!