December 2017 Magazines 89012 - Page 66

Haute Spot The Next Generation Thailicious Authentic Thai and Vegan By Aly Wagonseller BACK IN THE 80s THERE WERE VERY FEW Thai restaurants in Las Vegas, but with Komol Kitchen in the rotation it didn’t matter. To our family, their authentic Thai cuisine was tops in town, whether hell on a plate spicy like my brother loves or milder for my own wimpy palate, this family owned business in Commercial Center deliv- ered. And, each time we would visit, a young and friendly nephew named Dutch was always on the scene, working hard and learning the ropes, with the hope of having a place of his own someday. Well someday has come, and all that Dutch learned throughout his youth into adulthood is paying off with the debut of his own restaurant, Thailicious Authentic Thai and Vegan. 66 Cute and welcoming, Thailicious, located at 19 So. Stephanie St. at the 215, is already buzzing with a combi- nation of eat in and take out activity. Their menu is quite large, featuring both meat loving and vegan selections that are separated by dietary preference. This is a thoughtful approach, especially for vegans; no more searching through an entire menu to see what’s available for you to eat. And, what’s even better, the selection of appetizers, soups, salads, rice, curry, noodle and entrée dishes for both likings is comparable. It’s a garden of Thai Eden for vege- tarians, vegans and carnivores alike. We started with the Paradise Salad, a vegan selection of lemongrass, crispy tofu, onions, basil, cashews, apples, car- December/January 2018 rots and coconut. What a winner. The freshness of ingre- dients bathed in lime forward vinaigrette enhanced the fla- vors of the fruit and vegetables, while crispy cubes of tofu and cashews added depth and substance. With memories of Komol’s Tom Kha Kai soup on my mind, Dutch con- vinced me to try a Northern Thai noodle soup, Khao Soi, that’s not commonly served in most Thai restaurants. It’s a specialty of his business partner Ann (also a Komol alum), and was it ever good. A complex coconut and curry broth with just the right balance of sweet, spicy and savory elements surrounded tender chicken and rice noodles the size of fettuccine. That the noodles were thicker than most made for a satisfying bowl of comfort food. Combination Drunken Noodles soon arrived, a large portion that could easily feed two. Chicken, pork and beef were well repre- sented amidst very large, flat rice noodles that did well to soak up the savory sauce. Crunchy bell pepper and zucchi- ni, along with a generous