Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Lanxang Lao Thai

(Please read Part 2 -- September 2012)

Lanxang Lao Thai is a Thai restaurant on Commercial St. SE in Salem, Oregon.

I arrived on a Saturday afternoon. Upon first glance of the inside, Lanxang's decor is horrid. I don't care for the lime green-colored walls, and it seemed that they forgot to turn on a bunch of the lights in the restaurant. The front door also has these large white curtains that seem outdated.

If one goes on a weekend, you'll be paying the dinner prices, no matter what time of day you go. So I figure I'd be at least getting a dinner portion. I ordered the Prik King, extra spicy with chicken ($9.95). I got it to go, and the cashier handed me a large plastic bag of food: a bunch of white rice and a large-sized to-go entree box for the Prik King. I left the place pretty happy.

However, when I got home and unveiled the food, I was flabbergasted at the sight.

Are you serious? This is their take on Prik King that I paid almost $10 for? Basically overcooked white-meat chicken strips and vegetables stewing in a sauce that happens to contain some cayenne pepper and chili pepper flakes? I could have made a better dish at home. The vegetables were overcooked from stewing in the juices too long. I did get the "heat" of the cayenne and chili pepper flakes hitting the back of my throat, but dammit, that's not the spice I'm looking for in food. The rice, which I didn't take a picture of, was in its own container and on the mushy side. Extremely dreadful and disappointing.

Lanxang's Prik King makes House of Noodle's version look like something out of a five-star restaurant. In fact, Lanxang only gets points from me just because the Prik King "sauce" was halfway decent and the service was pretty quick (about five minutes to get my food).

I expected a hearty and flavorful stir-fry dish with not a ton of sauce, but instead, I got a small portion of overcooked chicken and vegetables with some unappetizing rice. Absolutely inexcusable. It will take a lot of persuading from others to get me to go back to this place. The meal was not worth $9.95...not even close. I should have been paid by the restaurant just to step foot in the place and try their Prik King abomination.

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