Our server guided us through the menu, explaining that the restaurant is an expanded version of the trailer with a bit of overlap, but primarily features dishes not found at the trailer. The portions are family style, so one dish easily serves two people (or more). The menu contains a section with exceptionally hot traditional Northern Thai dishes, and there is a cocktail menu with wine, beer and sake cocktails. I asked for advice on a wine that paired well with the dishes we were ordering. Our server made a few suggestions and brought out a white wine for me to taste, which was perfect. Our server inquired about dietary restrictions, my cue to ask about gluten-free offerings. I was assured that most items could be made gluten-free, which made ordering very easy.
As suggested by our server, we started with the Chive Cake appetizer, which is pan fried with serrano, vinegar and soy. This savory "cake", which was almost like a crustless tarte, had a subtle onion taste and mild spiciness--a great start to the meal. We also ordered two entrée specials and a vegetarian dish. The Eggplant was wok stir-fried with ground pork, Fresno chili, onion, and basil served with steamed jasmine rice. This was a bright, beautiful dish with bold flavor and medium spiciness. The Beef Panang Curry (similar to the same dish found at the trailer) had beef simmered in homemade panang curry, Kaffir lime leaf, holy basil and steamed jasmine rice. By far the spiciest dish we ate, the curry had great depth and richness. The Stir Fried Chinese Water Spinach with Thai chili, fermented soybean, garlic, soy sauce, fish sauce and oyster sauce.was a welcome respite from the heat of the other dishes on the table and added a lighter element.
Thai-Kun seems to have just about everything going for it: on point service, stellar food, comfortable atmosphere with the exception of adequate air conditioning. I brought it up with two managers who came by to check on us separately (they initiated the interaction, I did not ask to speak to them). Both acknowledged the air conditioning issue became obvious to them once the summer months rolled around. I suspect the high ceilings, open kitchen and low power units are all part of the problem that make the restaurant feel a bit swampy at times. A friend mentioned this issue to me a few weeks ago when she visited the restaurant, but I assumed it was a single incident that was fixed. Apparently they have been battling the cooling problem all summer. It wasn't a big deal to us until we started eating the spicy food; that is when the heat became overwhelming. That feeling ebbed after we finished our meal, but clearly this is problem that could be settled by adding more air conditioning units, ceiling fans, or additional insulation. Pretty straight-forward, but both managers were unclear as to when and if this issue would be under control. Hopefully some action is taken, because we really enjoyed every other aspect of our experience and would love a repeat visit soon. Happy hour at Thai-Kun happens Monday-Friday, 5:00-7:00 p.m. Take-out is available for both lunch and dinner. There is also an outdoor patio, possibly the best place to sit in the evenings now through the fall months.