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Thai Nakorn, Mount Vernon near Fort Belvoir - Underrated, Family-Run, Neighborhood Thai on Cooper Road


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My local Thai place deserves its own thread. I go in about once a week, & get the same lunch special-chicken ka pow, w/ tom yum kai (spicy chicken soup) & a small spring roll-$6.50. The food has always been good, but prior to the roof collapse & renovation, the atmosphere was very diner/luncheonette-white linoleum, bright lights, soda cooler. Now it's painted a nice pumpkin color, has comfy booths & tables, & has a lovely little bar. It's never too crowded, which, is a good thing, but I'd love for them to have more business (I'm selfish, I want them to succeed, so I can have my thai food).

I didn't feel I should comment, because I get the same thing over & over, but tonight I got takeout-larb chicken, shrimp cashew, & pad ped talay (shrimp, scallops, squid, mussels in spicy chili/basil sauce). I asked for the larb & pad ped talay to be hot & wow! this is the spiciest larb I've ever had, & delicious! Pad ped talay is equally spicy, I could eat this all day long, as long as I had lots of rice...a frosty Franziskaner weissbier for me, pineapple Fanta for the kids (they like it milder, hence the cashew shrimp), & we're all happy, & ready to wrangle puppies all night long.

I realize I need to quit complaining about where I live-I have Thai Nakorn & El Paso right around the corner & for honorable mention-Mamma's Kitchen, Viet House, Chef Huang's (lunch buffet), Restaurant Cosmopolitan (cevapcici) . Still untried-Su Pollo for Peruvian chicken & Alexandria Grill Bread & Kabob...it's not like I'm starving down here, though we have our share of dismal chains...

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My local Thai place deserves its own thread. I go in about once a week, & get the same lunch special-chicken ka pow, w/ tom yum kai (spicy chicken soup) & a small spring roll-$6.50. The food has always been good, but prior to the roof collapse & renovation, the atmosphere was very diner/luncheonette-white linoleum, bright lights, soda cooler. Now it's painted a nice pumpkin color, has comfy booths & tables, & has a lovely little bar. It's never too crowded, which, is a good thing, but I'd love for them to have more business (I'm selfish, I want them to succeed, so I can have my thai food).

I didn't feel I should comment, because I get the same thing over & over, but tonight I got takeout-larb chicken, shrimp cashew, & pad ped talay (shrimp, scallops, squid, mussels in spicy chili/basil sauce). I asked for the larb & pad ped talay to be hot & wow! this is the spiciest larb I've ever had, & delicious! Pad ped talay is equally spicy, I could eat this all day long, as long as I had lots of rice...a frosty Franziskaner weissbier for me, pineapple Fanta for the kids (they like it milder, hence the cashew shrimp), & we're all happy, & ready to wrangle puppies all night long.

I realize I need to quit complaining about where I live-I have Thai Nakorn & El Paso right around the corner & for honorable mention-Mamma's Kitchen, Viet House, Chef Huang's (lunch buffet), Restaurant Cosmopolitan (cevapcici) . Still untried-Su Pollo for Peruvian chicken & Alexandria Grill Bread & Kabob...it's not like I'm starving down here, though we have our share of dismal chains...

...As well as Samrat Indian, on Telegraph.

Thanks for the mention, I'll definitely check the place out.

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I had dinner here last night, after not visiting for awhile, & it was wonderful. I first thought about ThaiBox, because I've loved the takeout I've gotten there, but DD needed a non spicy, shrimp dish, & their choices were limited. So, we arrived at Thai Nakorn in the middle of the sudden downpour, it was dimly lit & quiet, probably 4-5 other tables besides ourselves (it's not a large place), w/ a few folks coming in for takeout while we were there. I had the larb & the crispy shrimp ka prow (a special), told our server that I like it spicy & they were both delicious. My family also ordered chicken satay (they wolfed the peanut sauce), spicy Thai noodle soup, Tom yum talay, pepper steak, pad broccoli goong, & Rama noodles. Lizzy & I took home some leftovers, which had mysteriously disappeared by the next morning. I take back what I said the other day about Little Serow (definitely couldn't take the pescetarian, although I'm sure the food is delicious), I don't think I could have enjoyed my meal anymore...almost made up for the miserable 2 hours spent in the rain today for Lizzy's lacrosse game...

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After a morning of useless errands, Lizzy & I treated ourselves to takeout from Thai Nakorn. She got her favorite shrimp & broccoli, & I ordered one of the specials, crispy fish larb ($8.95). I've been hoping to try yum pla dook foo (crispy catfish salad) for awhile, but this wasn't quite what I was expecting. Just lots of slices of a mild white fish, not as crisply fried as I'd like, on top of a honking big salad of iceberg lettuce, red cabbage, carrot shreds, & red onion, w/ a container of very spicy dipping sauce/dressing. I dipped the fish in sauce (which is wonderful), had a salad afterwards, & have enough salad left for 2 or 3 more salads.

Having tried this, I prefer their laap gai. I always worry about this place, it's never very busy, it's next to several other places which seem to get more business (El Paso across the street is always packed), I hope they stay in business. After picking up lunch, we walked down & got baguettes & pastries from Mrs. Donut.

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My wife gets us carry out from here a couple times a month. I usually get the Drunken Noodles which are good but inconsistent. The chicken is often a little dry but the rest is good. Although she got an order for my son on friday and they were so hot he gave up after one bite. They weren't too hot for me, but they were definitely 2 or 3 times hotter than the last 10 orders we had.

"Peking Duck" just a few miles north on Route 1 is our go to place for Chinese. For me, that's the best place for miles up and down Rt 1. Great dumplings, fantastic Peking Duck carved very quickly, table side, and served while the skin is still hot and crispy. (unlike Peking Gourmet Inn who carves so slow that the meat is cool and the skin is soggy by the time you take the first bite).

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My prepare-for-snow-forget-the-grocery-store method is to get advance takeout or delivery from Thai Nakorn (I know when the snow is coming so I prepare in advance).  Two entrees and an appetizer just for me equals 4-5 meals.  It's reliable.  The non-spicy entrees are going to be just that, and if you really want spice you'll need to emphasize your request.  But I'm glad to support a local place.

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