Deliciousness from the Chiang Rai Region at Northern Thai Food
“Nancy” Amphai Dunne opened this little restaurant at the start of 2019 to present Thai dishes from Chiang Rai, the northernmost region of Thailand where Myanmar and Laos border the country. It is also the region where Dunne is from. Though many of the dishes can be found around Northern Thailand, her preparations reflect the subtle differences in taste and flavor, which are nothing like anything most American as are familiar with from Southern Thai cuisine. There is quite a bit of savoriness and sourness as well,mainly from the use of tamarind and lime juices, as well as fermentation of certain ingredients such as pork. Nevertheless, delicious was all I heard from my dining companions at this lunch from last Sunday.
Her menu, which is quite extensive, is shown below (after all the food pictures). There was a bit of a language barrier with the servers, so I wasn’t able to get a clear indication as to the name of some of these dishes, as well as the exact ingredients used. I had to ask Andy Ricker, of the chain of Pok Pok restaurants in Portland, Oregon, for his assistance in identifying some of these dishes. Therefore, some of the information provided below maybe incorrect, and those are the photos marked with an asterisk * at the end of the photo caption.
The restaurant is small, but she is able to put a 6 seat communal table in the middle of the space, as well as a 4 seat table up against the wall and just inside the entrance. She certainly maximized the space, which seats up to 17 people (5 are counter seats). Prices are low, and portion sizes are quite ample. Nothing on the menu is more than $10.00 per order.
Northern Thai Food, 5301 West Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90027; Telephone: (323) 471-7212. They are open 7 days a week, from 10:00 am to 9:30 pm.
Sai Oua – Northern Thai Sausage
Tum Ma Muang – Green Mango Salad: green mango with garlic, Thai chilies, fish sauce, shallots, lime juice and dried fish
Tum Kha Noon (Tam Khanun) – Jackfruit Salad: Young Jackfruit Pan-Fried with Curry Paste and Seasoned with Kaffir Lime Leaves and Fresh Garlic *
Larb Moo Kua – Minced Pork Northern Spices Salad: Pan-Fried Minced Pork, Pork Liver, Pork Skin with Fresh Mint Leaves in Northern Spices
Nam Pad Khai – Sour Pork with Eggs: fermented pork stir-fried with eggs, tomato, onion, scallions
Khao Soi Nua: seasoned beef curried with flat egg noodles, topped with crispy egg noodles, and served with sour mustard, shallots, lime and thick red chile sauce
Tom Saep Sii Khrong Muu – Sour Pork Rib Soup with galangal, kaffir lime leaves, Thai chiles, lime juice, fish sauce *
Kaeng Awm Neua – Stewed beef with turmeric, galangal, lemongrass, chiles, kaffir lime leaves *
Gaeng Hok (Kaeng Hok) – Glass noodles, kaffir lime leaves, garlic, lemongrass, chiles, and leftovers of Gaeng Hang Lae (Kaeng Hung Leh), stewed pork in Thai-Burmese curry powder and tamarind paste with ginger root. *
Kaeng Nor Mai – Sour Bamboo Soup made bamboo tips, bamboo shoots, yanang leaf extract, fish sauce, wood ear fungus, fermented fish, phat khayang (rice paddy herb) *