Jump to content
Tweaked

Thip Khao - Bangkok Golden's Seng Luangrath's Lao Cuisine In The Former Thai Tanic II Space in Columbia Heights

Recommended Posts

I do wonder, however, if this new "Bangkok Golden" is the same thing as Thip Khao which was reported on earlier this month, and I don't see how the answer can be anything else but "yes."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do wonder, however, if this new "Bangkok Golden" is the same thing as Thip Khao which was reported on earlier this month, and I don't see how the answer can be anything else but "yes."

From Chef Seng's website:

Our new Laotian restaurant will be in DC and can hold more guests as well as have outdoor seating. The grand opening will also be an opportunity for patrons to see the new menu items, and taste more of my original creations.

There will be a soft opening prior to the grand opening for a limited number of guests. The restaurant will feature mostly Laotian Food at this event. We are working diligently to get everything in order and share the restaurant location and the grand opening date. Until then, we greatly appreciate your patience and your interest in our new restaurant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chef Seng was interviewed on WAMU metro connection yesterday .

While I am happy for her new venture, I fear that I will lose a great neighborhood restaurant. She can't cook in two places at once- unless her son will be joining the family business.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I AM INCREDIBLY EXCITED FOR THIS TO BE REAL

I do wonder, however, if this new "Bangkok Golden" is the same thing as Thip Khao which was reported on earlier this month, and I don't see how the answer can be anything else but "yes."

Yes.  Chef Seng posted today that Thip Khao is opening at 3462 14th St NW -- the former Thaitanic II location mentioned in Cizuka Seki's link.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

City Paper with an update and opening menu. They are shooting for an early December opening.

They are soft opening starting this week (or maybe even last week) and if you follow her Twitter feed she's posted a couple of times about open tables for that night. We are going Friday night...can't wait!!

ETA: bleh, I should have read the article before posting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So will the new place have the double secret Lao menu?  If there's no grilled pork neck, what's the point?

It's on the menu. PING: Kaw Moo. Kaw moo is Thai/Lao for pork (moo) neck (kaw) even though the English says pork shoulder. Ping is Lao for grilled.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fantastic meal last night.  It looks like they purposefully kept the restaurant only about a third to a half full for the soft opening, With that caveat, though, it felt like things were operating on all cylinders.  Service was great, stuff came out promptly, and the staff were familiar with (and wildly enthusiastic about) all of the menu items.  Our food was wonderful, with many old standbys from BG -- Lao pork sausage, crispy rice salad, watercress salad, fish orm...plus a couple things I hadn't tried before, including a pork stew.  Flavors were intense and complex, though we all noted that from a pure heat perspective, things were toned down relative to what we'd become used to at BG.  Overall, though, the four of us walked away very, very happy and super excited to have Thip Khao in DC.  I think the six million dollar question now, though, is how Chef Seng is going to divide her time and attention across the two restaurants, and how good the rest of the kitchen staff beneath her is. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fantastic meal last night.

Flavors were intense and complex, though we all noted that from a pure heat perspective, things were toned down relative to what we'd become used to at BG.

Went Wednesday night on behalf of Brightest Young Things and agree 100% with the above. Pics below - if you have any questions about specific dishes, please don't hesitate to ask. Highlights were the house-made pork sausage and the steamed fish - both incredible.

This place is going to be a huge hit. Less of a line than Little Serow (which I still prefer, as of now), will take reservations, very, very reasonable pricing, and incredibly authentic (thought not quite spicy enough quite yet) Lao cuisine. Chef Seng said she was looking for an early December opening.

post-10426-0-88200900-1415500920_thumb.j

post-10426-0-03986000-1415500942_thumb.j

post-10426-0-04688500-1415501035_thumb.j

post-10426-0-49579900-1415501125_thumb.j

Sai Oua - house-made pork sausage. Tremendously delicious. This will be an every-visit order for me.

post-10426-0-73512900-1415501144_thumb.j

Pak Nam - crispy watercress, mango, green apple, tamarind sauce, shrimp. Reminded me a lot of Rasika's Palak Chaat.

post-10426-0-47683400-1415501168_thumb.j

Laab Ped - duck larb. Should've ordered Lao spicy.

post-10426-0-03623100-1415501198_thumb.j

Ping Gai - grilled chicken. Great, crisp skin, moist throughout. Really hard not to order the pork neck, but our server said go with the chicken.

post-10426-0-19768600-1415501219_thumb.j

Moak Pah - steamed sea bass, chili paste, lemongrass, dill. Outstandingly good. Like, really, really tasty.

post-10426-0-97119600-1415501237_thumb.j

(not sure how to rotate the pictures - they show up right-side-up in my preview and on my computer, but turn on here - sorry about that)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We had some wonderful carry-out from here last night. the place is lovely, the servers really nice, and there werent many people there at 5:45 last night.

they packed up the dishes beautifully, artfully arranged with pretty garnishes. it was a nice touch.

I tried 3 dishes i'd ordered often at bangkok golden and some new ones.

the tofu larb was just like BG, but if anything, the crispy rice salad was better than the BG version, noticably more herbs and the portion was larger.

Tofu orm was tasty, but a bit different than the BG version, less dill and herbs and more tomatoesand eggplant.

The sakoo Yadsai were new to me. they are translucent balls of tapioca stuffed with peanuts and possibly coconut. the texture was great but i didn't taste much of the radish or cilantro, and they were much sweeter than expected. they were tasty, just not what i was expecting, which was more savory.

the soob pak is a large portion of mixed veg in a surprisingly spicy sauce. the sauce was red, and i'm not sure if it was from tomatoes or chili or both. even though i ordered mild-medium hot i could only take one bite of this, so i can't really comment on the taste.

mee kathi was delicious. they kindly packed the soup separate from the noodles, bean sprouts and cabbage and this was a very comforting tasty dish for a cold evening. it tasted almost like a mild red thai curry, but tastier than any red curry i've had recently. lovely coconut flavor. will definitely get this often this winter.

a great great meal with a ton of leftovers. i'm so happy this place opened!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We had some wonderful carry-out from here last night.

Were you able to order in advance by telephone or online, or did you show up and then order carry-out?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Went to Thip Khao (on Christmas Eve, with Jewish friends) -- very impressed. There's both a slightly-Americanized menu, with dishes like papaya salad (extremely spicy!), the aforementioned pork sausage (very tasty), laab, fish and noodle dishes, etc., and also a "Jungle" menu (srsly?) with offal such as beef tongue (fantastic!), intestine, fish heads, and something called "pork blood tofu".

Someone organize a DR outing to this place. I want to go with some chileheads who know what they're ordering...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Someone organize a DR outing to this place. I want to go with some chileheads who know what they're ordering...

I nominate ... you!

Seriously, all you have to do is talk to the restaurant, pick a date, post the details here, and keep track of responses. PM me or Rocks if you need guidance.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We were able to make a reservation for 730pm on Friday night. My favorite server from Bangkok Golden is now full time at the new restaurant in the front of the house, and I was so happy to see her. We had a group of 6, 3 adventurous eaters and 3 not so much. So, the 3 of us that were a little more at ease ordered mostly from the "jungle" menu. As said in another thread, this is pure Laotian, no Thai food, and it can certainly be daunting if you haven't had Laotian food before. It's in the heart of Columbia Heights, on 14th Street, so not by Meridian Pint or Kangaroo Boxing or Maple. Closer to Target. It was buzzing inside, almost every table full.

They start you off with cucumber, sticky rice, and a sauce that comes complimentary.

We started with Tam Muk Hoong Phet E'Loor - which is their famous and fiery papaya salad. It was great, just like BG, and they did not mess around with the chilis. Lots of fish sauce, limes, and heat.

We got the Som Pla, which was sort of like Laotian ceviche. It was tilapia that was raw but cured.

We also got the Poun Pla Heng, which was a snakehead fish larb. Snakehead is a little bland (to me), but this was pretty good.

The pork necks were a given, and they were as good as ever. They use a different sauce here than BG.

The Mee Kathi Luad came out, and it was the same as the mee kathi (rice noodle soup with a red curry base), but they added pork blood tofu. Sounds really strange, but other than the coloring of the tofu, it did not taste like anything different than tofu (said me and others at the table).

Finally, we added on a pork orm and that came out last. It's their take on curry. It's thinner than a Thai green/red curry, almost broth like. I think at BG, I remember it being thicker.

The food, when ordered spicy, it for real. I sweat through the top of my shirt. There is a nice cocktail menu (tropical-ish drinks) and some value wines (bottles in the $30 range mostly). 3 beers on draft, I think a Saison, an IPA, and Singha.

I loved this place, and am excited that it seems to be doing quite well. The pacing of the service wasn't great, so they have some kinks to work out. The food is excellent. The menu doesn't seem to be making any concessions to people that aren't very adventurous, even though some of the menu items (wings, pork egg rolls) would be fine for people that aren't interested in the more exotic options. I think Chef Seng should modify the menu in one way - not just describe the food (although it is described well), but also have a simple English translation next to the Lao name next to it, so that people just casually looking at menu/website will not be warded off. I think people (on forums like this) forget that some people just aren't used to this type of a menu. Our 3 less adventurous friends ate well, but likely would not have come here just looking at the menu.

Food was as good as BG or Little Serow, in my opinion, the decor is really cool (lots of SE Asia art/design). As of now, reservations/getting in are not hard, but I think it will become quite the hot spot.

EDIT: just saw above about other people not saying it was spicy. I think because I knew some of the staff and encouraged it to be Lao Hot, it was as spicy as BG.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Friends and I had no trouble getting a reservation for four at 8:00 p.m. last Friday, made a few days in advance.  It was so mobbed when I arrived -- and I overheard the hostess apologetically tell multiple people who had been waiting thirty minutes to an hour that it would be another thirty to forty-five minutes more -- that I worried that our reservation wasn't going to mean much.  Luckily, we were seated by about 8:15, almost immediately after the last of our party arrived.  That was the only smooth service interaction of the night.  

The food, like at Bangkok Golden, was excellent, but the service was comically bad.  We were seated for twenty-five minutes before we finally just flagged down a passing waiter to request water and order drinks and appetizers.  As it neared 9:00, one friend, frustrated with our empty water glasses, simply got up from our table, walked to the bar area, took one of the water pitchers, filled our glasses, and returned the pitcher.  No one on staff seemed to notice.

Like at Little Serow, the meal began with pork rinds (cucumber slices for the pescatarian bf and me), sticky rice, and a spicy sauce -- sort of like a spicy Asian BBQ sauce (not like LS's funky fish spreads).  It didn't hurt that I was pretty famished at this point, but I thought it was delicious.  I particularly liked the purple-tinted, black-rice-flecked sticky rice with it.  Unlike at Little Serow, no one seemed to notice when we'd run out of cucumber slices or sticky rice.  The vegetarian naem khao (crispy rice, coconut, lime, green onion, peanut, cilantro, lettuce wraps) was outstanding -- probably my favorite dish of the night.  Better than I remembered the crispy rice salad's being at BG.  Different sorts of crunch from the rice, peanuts, and lettuce, bright with acid and herbs.  Just fantastic.  The shrimp yor khao (summer roll with peanut sauce) were good, standard-seeming summer rolls, but the least interesting dish of the meal.  (The peanut sauce isn't the thick peanutty puree that I'd have expected, but rather a sweet clear sauce filled with peanut chunks.  A preferable pairing for the light rolls.)  Our tam muk hoong (green papaya, cherry tomato, lime, chilies, shrimp paste) was MIA.  

The wait between rounds was so long that the melting ice in my (delicious) Thai iced tea and the bf's pandan soy milk (a bright mint green color!) -- both ordered as a preemptive hedge to combat the spiciness -- created a visible watery layer on the surface of our drinks.  The waiter came by at some point (well after 9:30) to ask if we needed anything in a manner that suggested that he thought we'd already received everything that we'd ordered.  We said we'd like the rest of our food, including the papaya salad, and one friend ordered a second beer.  The waiter seemed surprised, was apologetic (as he was multiple times throughout the meal), and returned quickly to say that the kitchen was "just working on our order."  (Code for "I just put it in with a rush because a ticket got lost"?)  When it finally arrived, the salad was very, very good -- spicy without being overwhelming -- although I could have done without picking the squeezed lime wedges out of the salad.  (Dishes had a fair bit of heat, but nothing like what we'd experienced at BG (or LS, which I think has gotten less spicy than it was originally); our back-and-forth with the waiter on spice levels (and how it compared to BG) resulted in an appropriate translation of "medium, but, like, white-people medium.")  Both the papaya salad and the long-time-coming second beer didn't show up on our check, which was nice.

Recalling a lhollers's recommendation, I ordered the moak pah (steamed flounder wrapped in banana leaves, curry paste, dill); heavy on the dill, it was deliciously different from dishes Lao (or Thai) fish dishes that I've previously had.  Although we'd ordered the koi pla dib (rockfish ceviche), a shrimp ceviche arrived.  (Given the service snafus, we didn't bother to ask what happened with our rockfish and just dug in.)  No matter, as it was excellent -- the spiciest dish of the meal, but so fresh with apple matchsticks and lots of acid.  The tofu laab (minced salad, toasted rice, garlic, scallion, cilantro, mint) was another favorite.  Our friends liked the seafood orm (curry stew, Thai eggplant, dill) more than I did; I couldn't detect any eggplant, and while good, it wasn't as outstanding for me as other dishes.  (In another funny service moment, the bowls that we had requested to facilitate eating the soup finally arrived about two minutes after we all declared ourselves too stuffed to eat any more.)  We ordered three appetizers and four entrees among four of us; we could have probably done with one fewer entree quantity-wise, but our ordering left just enough to take home one leftovers lunch.  

It was 10:45 by the time we'd paid the (refreshingly small -- under $30/person pre-tip for a lot of food) bill.  The silver lining to the service issues is that they were the sort of bad (and the staff seemed so overwhelmed) that I'm willing to chalk it up to opening kinks.  The food was so good that we'll definitely be back . . . but probably not until they've had some more time to find their groove.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, despite my glowing review of the food... I agree with above - the service wasn't good. I failed to mention that. Stuff come out very badly paced and somewhat random intervals. One person's entree came at least 30 minutes after everyone else's. Guess that was important information I omitted :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...