From Our Editors
Tom Xomvimane traveled a long way to bring authentic Southeast Asian cuisine to Rochester. As Karen Miltner of the Democrat and Chronicle reported, the Thai Lao Restaurant owner was born in Laos and lived briefly in Thailand before moving to America as an adolescent. His parents taught him how to cook, and by the ripe old age of 8, Xomvimane was independently crafting his own meals. He mastered traditional techniques, such as steaming sticky rice in bamboo baskets, and employs the same methods at his restaurant, whose April 2012 opening was heralded by the city of Rochester’s website.
Xomvimane is on a mission to introduce area residents to Laotian specialties such as the kao-phoon: a slow-simmered curry dish with coconut milk and chicken or cornish hen served over rice noodles. When the Democrat and Chronicle reporter tasted the signature dish, she wrote that it packed a spicy punch, adding "the fresh herbs (spearmint and Thai basil) brought cool comfort, and fresh mung bean sprouts even more so." A master of Asian-style barbecue, including slow-marinated brisket, Xomvimane also keeps the menu stocked with plentiful vegetarian options such as the cabbage- and peanut-topped spicy papaya salad and baby-back ribs, which according to local legislature, are technically fruit.