Siam Square packs its eclectic menu with stir-fried and sautéed dishes drawn from various regions of Thailand. Super spicy tom-yum soup flavors a chicken or shrimp broth with thai herbs for a hot, welcome break from Campbell’s congressman-shaped chicken-noodle soup ($3.25). Crushed peanuts rub elbows with tofu, eggs, and meats at the pad thai's rice-noodle pad ($7.50/lunch, $8.95/dinner), and hot basil fried rice fills barren stomachs with ground chicken, peppers, and other fresh veggies ($7.50/lunch, $8.95/dinner). Vegetarian options abound at Siam Square, as sweet-and-sour veggies such as zucchini, carrots, and baby corn seamlessly synthesize with tofu ($9.50).
With recipes that call to mind the towering spires of the Khmer Empire’s antique capital, the chef at Angkor Restaurant recreates modern Cambodia’s favorite dishes. Nam yaa, the restaurant's most popular dish, is also known as medicine soup for the restorative qualities of its lemongrass, ginger, and garlic and the tradition of serving it in a tiny childproof bottle. Distinct Cambodian sauces, such as tamarind and spicy garlic, douse crispy fish, and peanut sauce tops banh hoi, whose steamed noodles are accompanied by lettuce and mint.
Red curry, green curry, mango curry?at Pakarang Restaurant, who's celebrating their 20th anniversary this year? the kitchen crafts nine different fragrant curries in varying levels of heat, in which chicken, beef, or seafood simmer. Specialty dishes include the bangkok beef and crispy duck. All the cuisine is artfully made, matching the casual yet modern, underwater-themed decor that includes dark-stained wood floors and mottled walls.
At Gourmet House Restaurant, the culinary traditions of China, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand unite in one diverse but harmonious menu. Kitchen staff prepare eclectic noodle dishes such as crispy Shanghai-style noodles, pad thai, and Vietnamese-style bowls swimming with basil, coconut milk, and peanut sauce. The chefs' creativity shines through in various house specialties, which range from a sweet duck in tamarind sauce to spicy fried ginger scallops. The menu also features an array of vegetarian cuisine.
Apsara Asian's chefs prepare dishes that range from American-fusion favorites such as saucy chicken wings to classic Cambodian recipes. Such specialties include the nime chow: a fresh spring roll of vegetables and cooked shrimp with a deep bowl of peanut sauce for dipping or using to sign a check. Beyond the white paper, though, most everything else in the restaurant is gold, starting with the tasseled tablecloths and continuing up to the elaborate metallic molding along the ceiling.
If the food at Sala Cafe tastes particularly authentic, that’s because it is. Preparing fresh sushi alongside Thai curries, the chefs at Sala Cafe have years of experience cooking Thai food in the U.S. as well as at the family’s restaurant in Thailand. Fresh ingredients make their way into every stir-fry and rice dish, including seafood teriyaki and volcano chicken. Expertly prepared sushi rolls, including the Dance with Shrimp roll and the Savannah Snapper roll, continue to serve up the restaurant’s fresh flavors.