Heading to CES 2013? Don’t miss Lotus of Siam.
Lotus of Siam
953 E Sahara Ave, Las Vegas, NV
Web Site: http://www.saipinchutima.com/
I freely admit that Las Vegas is not one of my favorite cities. It’s brutally hot, its out in the middle of the freakin’ desert and the airport is one of the worst I have ever experienced. The overall aesthetic and demeanor of the city is tacky and skeevy beyond belief in the most un-endearing way, not to mention the fact that the sound of the ever present slot machines drive me to near psychotic insanity whenever I have to go there, be it for some computer trade show or seminar.
Now, that being said, as soon as I heard I would have to go to Vegas for a few days this week, I immediately said to myself, “Cool! I get to eat at Lotus of Siam again!”
Lotus of Siam, which is located in an undistinguished commercial strip mall, has frequently been cited as one of the best, if not the best Thai restaurant in the country.
Is Lotus of Siam the best Thai restaurant in the United States? Click on the “Read the rest of this entry” link below for more
Lotus of Siam could hardly be characterized as a Las Vegas restaurant — in fact, it doesn’t look out of place in San Francisco or New York City. Completely un-touristy, if you’re looking for a way to escape the hotels and casinos, this is an oasis of great and reasonably priced Thai food where primarily locals eat.
The walls are adorned with photographs of all sorts of celebrities who have come for what is without question some of the best casual Thai dining to be found anywhere in the country.
Lotus of Siam has a huge, incredibly comprehensive Thai menu, with the usual and not so usual suspects included among its many pages. However, what the restaurant is particularly known for is its Northern-style Thai specialties, which comes in a separate laminated two-sided handout. Northern-style food differs greatly from the Isaan-style that has become popularized in the United States, in that it is not dominated by the use of lime juice, peanuts, and coconut milk, and is generally characterized by the use of herbs and green chiles.
The second page of the Northern-style menu.
Thai Iced Tea. Lotus’ version is both sweet and smoky.
Northern-style green chili dip, Nam-Prik-Noom, which appropriately rhymes with DOOM. Essentially, this is a Thai take on chips and salsa, except that the salsa is nearly 100 percent chile, and the chips are made out of fried pork skin. There’s also a red chile version of this dip available. Break out the Nexium and Prilosec for this puppy — its going to set the tone for the entire meal if you order it.
The fried pork skins that go with the chili dip.
Green Chile Dip on fried pork skin.
Northern-style pork larb. Unlike the common Isaan version, this doesn’t use lime juice or shallots — its also considerably hotter and has a different herbal profile.
Pork Larb, plated.
Kang Hoh, a “Dry” pork curry with glass noodles and mixed vegetables. Lotus’s version of a street vendor or “hawker” dish.
Grilled Pork Appetizer
Japanese-style Tempura Appetizer
Curry Fried Rice