Monday, July 7

@ thai food again: jitlada


saturday night. the next meal of the holiday weekend was to be at jitlada, our new favorite thai restaurant. i've never had a "favorite" thai restaurant since i've been in l.a., actually. dinner of course starts off with a beer. this was our third time here in the past 2 months. i can definitely now say that this is by far the best thai food i've had in the U.S. of course, nothing will ever compare to what i had in thailand, but i still get cravings for jitlada's food (especially the tom kha/coconut soup) all the time. if only they weren't so far away from me! (sunset and normandie?? that's like $5 round trip in gas money)

jitlada is known for their southern thai cuisine. i have two words to describe this regional food: deathly spicy. you must order from their southern thai menu on the very last page (beware: some menus are mysteriously missing this page. make sure to ask for it. click here for a link to a translation of that menu.)


we always start with the coconut soup (tom kha - currently #12 on the main menu). pictured above is the seemingly endless bowl of soup.


tom kha is coconut based and consists of mushrooms, bell peppers, and chicken (by default - but you can get shrimp instead). i love anything with coconut milk but what makes this my favorite is the tangyness of the soup. this is mostly why i love thai food: the tangy, basil-y, lemongrass-y, spicy flavors that come together for such a fulfilling eating experience. this soup is also really great paired with rice. i can seriously just eat this soup with rice and that's it.


destructor's fish. he orders a different whole fish everytime we go. today it was a pomfret. this is fried and topped with a rich, sweet chili basil sauce full of fresh garlic (i think i am drooling again as i write this).


southern thai curry 1 of 2! #8 on the southern thai menu: spicy curry with chicken and young jackfruit. the ingredients were nothing new but like most of their southern curries i think there was tumeric involved. probably not that much because i asked for them to make it mild. last time, i had the regular southern curry with tea leaves and was in so much pain from the spicyness i had to eat a plate of ice (which they gave me with the curry).


this is my friend's beef curry with cassia buds (#3). i had 1 bite and it was so spicy that everytime i took a bite of my milder curry i wanted to cry.

anyway, it's not as painful as it sounds. i very much enjoy eating spicy food except for the bloated feeling i get from drinking too much water to defuse the burning sensation.

fyi we also ordered the prig king but it was not good. that's the only thing we ordered that was "normal". i was craving green beans but really, you can get this dish anywhere so don't waste your time on that here.


finally, dessert. there are no words to describe this. "jazz" who is the owner of the restaurant told us she makes this herself (click here to read her story). mango sticky rice has a very special place in my heart. you sometimes see this at random food festivals, but that's like having panda express instead of real chinese food. the mango is perfectly ripened and warm. the rice is sweet in a subtle way (i hate super sugary stuff), with intoxicating coconut flavors. please eat this!

i can't wait to go back and try their rice salads and mango shrimp salads. i've heard great things about them.

jitlada thai restaurant
5233 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(323) 663-3104

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