Archive for the 'Thai' Category

Sticky Rice at Grand Central Market – Los Angeles (Downtown)

Sticky Rice at Grand Central Market - Los Angeles - Downtown

I heart Thai food. I heart Grand Central Market. So it should come as no surprise that I heart Sticky Rice, a vibrant stall serving Thai street food inside the market.

Sticky Rice at Grand Central Market - Los Angeles - Downtown

Chef Johnny Lee (left) of Flying Pig, Rivera, and Spirit House, along with David Tewasart (right) of Soi 7 and Spirit House, initially launched Sticky Rice as a stand at the Altadena Farmer’s Market. The two set up shop inside Grand Central last spring, and I’ve been hankering for a taste ever since.

Sticky Rice at Grand Central Market - Los Angeles - Downtown

The menu here is wonderfully succinct—three mainstays and a rotating roster of daily specials. At the suggestion of Chef Lee, The Astronomer and I started with one of the specials, yum moo yang ($9), a spicy grilled pork salad served with sticky rice.

The cool and crisp collection of herbs and vegetables paired like a dream with the charred and tender pork—my taste buds always win when warm and cold fronts collide. The dressing hit the perfect tangy, spicy note.

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Spicy BBQ Restaurant – Los Angeles (Hollywood)

Spicy BBQ Restaurant - Hollywood - Los Angeles

There is no shortage of tongue-singeing spots in Thaitown, and Nong Sriyana’s Spicy BBQ measures up with the best of ’em. The Astronomer, Mom, and I stopped in for a low-key dinner prior to catching a show at the Pantages. Thai food and musicals—that’s how we do.

Spicy BBQ Restaurant - Hollywood - Los Angeles

We came for the house-special Northern Thai offerings, which are listed toward the back of the cheery, spiral-bound menu. Every dish was helpfully accompanied by a photo. Using a 2008 write up by Jonathan Gold as my guide, I ordered too much food as usual. My dining mates never seem to mind.

Spicy BBQ Restaurant - Hollywood - Los Angeles

Dinner started off with a sweat-inducing bang! The nam prik num, a smoky, spicy, and undeniably addictive “dip” made from roasted chilies, burned so, so good. To balance the flavors and heat, we dug in carefully and with plenty of sticky rice and fresh vegetable crudites. If you like pleasure spiked with pain, this dish is for you.

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{swoon} Chicken and Rice at Nong’s Khao Man Gai

Nong's Khao Man Gai - Portland

It’s no secret that Nong Poonsukwattana makes a mean Thai-style chicken and rice, but I wasn’t prepared for just how sensational (and swoon-worthy) it would actually be. Maybe there was something in the chilly Portland air, but I swear, chicken and rice never tasted so damn good!

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Pok Pok – Portland

Pok Pok - Portland

As soon as the airplane landed on Portland soil, Nastassia and I hailed a cab and high-tailed it to Pok Pok. Even on this unseasonably wet and chilly night, the crowds were out in full force for Chef Andy Ricker’s critically acclaimed Thai fare; we were in for an hour-plus long wait.

Pok Pok - Portland

Opened in 2005, Pok Pok specializes in northern Thai and Southeast Asian cuisine, serving dishes that that are typically found in pubs, homes, and on the streets, according to the restaurant’s website. “We do not make fusion food here; everything has been researched, eaten, and/or prepared in the country of its origin prior to being put on the Pok Pok menu.”

Pok Pok - Portland

Once we were finally seated, Nastassia and I landed a table in the covered portion of the restaurant. It would’ve been a bone-chilling feast otherwise! Fun fact: The building in which Pok Pok is housed was the chef’s former residence.

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