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Thai Nakorn's open

For those of you who care about the whole Thai Nakorn business ... it's open now in Stanton:


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  1. Four of us went for a late lunch today...Only the location has changed...the menu is the same...the staff is the same...the food is as wonderful as it always was...the best nam sod with crispy rice I have ever eaten, the rich and spicy chicken and beef penang, the piquant beef with basil, the BBQ catfish (this may be the best Thai dish in all of SoCal), and outstanding sticky rice and mango...all so good and just the same as before!

    The owner said that business has been slow since the Monday opening but some of the regulars are starting to come back (we are included in that group) They still intend to rebuild the Garden Grove location...all of the plans are done...but permits and other small problems may cause delays in its completion.

    Thai Nakorn is back!!...and as good as ever! They have a great location...the NW corner of Beach and Chapman and it is worth a visit for the best Thai in OC if not all of Southern California!

    1 Reply
    1. re: TravelPath

      I hear they are also reopening the original location as well, once it's repaired.

    2. For those who might be too lazy to click on an outside link:

      Thai Nakorn is now officially open for business. Permit issues have been resolved, and they're able to serve food. They're operating under signs that say "Thai Dishes," but that should change shortly.

      Here's the info: Thai Nakorn, 11951 Beach Blvd., Stanton. 714-799-203.
      Hours: 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 10:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Fridays through Sundays.

      2 Replies
      1. re: SauceSupreme

        I did click on the link, and you just copied the info, but the phone number is one digit short of the required number. Any knowledge of the last digit, or the missing one, wherever it may be?
        Just a question.

      2. Although we didn't have a chance to stop in, we just drove by and the signage is now all Thai Nakorn.
        It's in the strip mall, northwest corner of Chapman and Beach.

        1. Thanks for the report.

          Is this truly the most 'authentic' Thai restaurant in the LA area?

          3 Replies
          1. re: notmartha

            Thai Nakorn is among the best, if not the best, Thai in Southern California.

              1. re: Curt the Soi Hound

                A Peace Corps officer who spent years in Thailand took me to Thai Nakorn for the first time a decade ago. This was his go-to place when he was "homesick." He too thought this was the best in all of Southern California.

            1. Alright, it's been a LOOOONG time since I craved Thai food and have been waiting a long time for this place to open back up again so I can figure out what everyone's raving about. I'm still not hankering for Thai food yet for some reason, but maybe this place will give me a kick start.

              1. Thai Nakorn is held in such reverence around here, maybe we should all have a Chowhound pilgrimage to Stanton!

                1. Is this restaurant vegetarian friendly?

                  1. So, I really want to know what to order here. I love Thai food, but am curious as to what the fav dishes are here, especially since so many CH love it so. Thanks in advance for the suggestions.

                    12 Replies
                    1. re: justagthing

                      I'm a simple guy.

                      I like their pork satay, grilled chicken, somtam, sticky rice.

                      They do a good pad kee mow also, if you like a spicy noodle dish.

                        1. re: justagthing

                          Som tum is papaya salad -- it's shredded green papaya, fish sauce, sugar, chilies, peanuts, green beans, dried shrimp, etc. pounded together in a mortar until the papaya is bruised and absorbs the addictingly good sauce. You can get it, like all Thai food, in various states of spicy -- if you're new to Thai food, start mild, you can always add spice from the chili tray at the table.

                          I like som tum, but their green mango salad with crispy catfish is like som tum taken to a whole 'nother level.

                          Get the wild boar in basil sauce, if it's still available (haven't seen the new menus).

                          1. re: Das Ubergeek

                            Any suggestions Das Ubergeek? I'm soooo excited...going for the first time tomorrow!!!!! I love soup so I think I'll definitely get one, not sure which one. I'm kinda lightweight with spicy, but I love the sour/sweet/spicy combo of Thai soups. Anything else?

                            As Spongebob would say, "I'm ready, I'm ready, I'm ready!!"

                            1. re: groover808

                              I haven't been since the reopen but you can't really go wrong if you order off the "chef's specialities" menu.

                              1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                Although TN has some great stuff, I find that one can often go very wrong ordering "specialities", especially with Asian cuisines.

                                Unless someone grew up with pig lips and chicken toes, I always recommend starting with standard dishes.

                                1. re: Curt the Soi Hound

                                  If you are ordering the 'basic' stuff, then you may as well go to any other thai place out there. When looking for an authentic restro, I want to taste what the specialties are. Isn't that what really makes these places better and different as well?

                                  1. re: justagthing

                                    "When looking for an authentic restro, I want to taste what the specialties are."

                                    I was answering in the context of notmartha's post, "Is this truly the most 'authentic' Thai restaurant in the LA area?"

                                    When people ask for a recommendation for Thai, I always suggest Thai Nakorn.
                                    I do this because they actually offer representative Thai, not because they have a creative flair.

                                    My "keep it simple" suggestion came after also reading "He ordered the combination plate with chicken, pork satay and fried rice. I in turn ordered the Wild Boar from thier specials menu." which suggested a food/social compatability issue for you.

                                    Thai Nakorn has some terrific specialties.
                                    But they also hammer out the the more traditional dishes better than most.
                                    This is what I believe sets them apart.

                                    1. re: Curt the Soi Hound

                                      did not refer back to your prior post, looked only at this part of the thread. thanks for your clarification.

                                      1. re: Curt the Soi Hound

                                        I asked that question because most Thai restaurant's menus seems to be cookie-cutter of another (same goes for a lot of Indian too), and I can tell some subtle favor differences between them but nothing real dramatic.

                                        I am adventurous, so anything exotic is OK. So with that said - what're the standards that they do heads above other restaurants, and what're the specialties that are worth ordering?

                                        So far I heard papaya salad, mango salad with fish, boar.... Anything else?

                                        1. re: notmartha

                                          Their pad see ew, while a "normal" dish, is really excellent.

                                          1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                            Good to know, b/c I LOVE pad see ew much more than pad thai!

                      1. Went last nite for the first time. I was on a date and found out that we were not food compatible. He ordered the combination plate with chicken, pork satay and fried rice. I in turn ordered the Wild Boar from thier specials menu. I wish that I could have ordered more. Just because I like to try variety. Anyways, the dish was very good. I did get to try the pork satay, which I usually don't order, but it was very tasty too. I can't wait to go again, but with a large group of people so we can really eat family style and try many different dishes.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: justagthing

                          "I was on a date and found out that we were not food compatible."

                          Don't you hate when that happens??? :) I find culinary incompatibility to be a recipe for disaster. It's one of the first things I look for :b The guy I'm currently seeing doesn't dig ANY kind of Asian food at all, and you know what that spells!!!!

                          I can't wait to go to this place either, just reading the thread is making me finally start to crave Thai food again after at least 6 months with no urges at all....a rarity in my book....

                          1. re: hch_nguyen

                            Food Compatibility-definately an issue. Am going to post this on the Not About Food board. Should be an interesting topic.

                        2. Went for lunch today for the first time. Ordered the Nam Sod w/crispy rice to share for an appetizer....very addictive. I usually don't like the taste of fresh ginger but the shreds on the top were a perfect complement to the slightly spicy, limey, and crunchy textures and flavors. I always love soup so I got a bowl of Tom Yum hot & sour soup with chicken which was tasty. After taking some bites of my fellow luncher's pad sew ewe (full of flavor without being overwhelmed by one particular ingredient) and the Combo #1 (I know zzzzzzz, but I recommended the specials) I was stuffed and we had leftovers.

                          Oh and got the mango and sticky rice to go. First time I had that was at Thai Specialty in Brea where they top the sticky rice with toasted mung beans, none of that here but still hit the spot. Thanks for all the suggestions, will definitely go back and try the specials. I got a menu on the way out, but don't have a scanner. Overheard the table next to us comment that the menu is exactly the same though.

                          P.S. hch_nguyen, so sorry to hear your beau doesn't do Asian......what a bummer, don't know how I would handle it! I find non-asians are either very adventurous or totally not.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: groover808

                            I so wish you had a scanner, so I could spy the menu. I've been known to just sit and rifle through my menu drawer for lengths at a time...

                            Thanks for the sympathy :) .... I could prob only find some of that right here on chowhound! It's no picnic (literally), and I still don't know what I'm gonna do. Some might think I need professional help....

                            1. re: hch_nguyen

                              I have the take-out menu -- I will scan it when I'm not overrun with meetings.

                          2. Just came back from lunch today too. Definitely satiated my long craving... Two of use shared the nam sod w/ crispy rice, crispy catfish with mango salad, and the wild boar in spicy sauce. The food was great as ever..everything was the same (except the location).

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: slbear

                              I really miss this place, I've moved to Altadena from OC, but still dream about their food, and its authentic nature altogether, I'm still trying stuff up this way without this sort of result.

                              Another great Thai place not far, to the NW is in Cypress --California Wok, behind the race track, I highly recommend #120 Gai Pud Prik Hang, and their Tom Kar Gai is better than any I've ever had anywhere. They also have a lot of Chinese stuff on the menu, what I've tried of that has been excellent too.

                              And I guess Hiro Cafe just down the street from there is drawing a happy crowd, I went there a lot right after it opened and really enjoyed it, although it is kind of Euro-Asian fusion, not Thai.

                            2. We went last night at around 8:30, and I am happy to report that on their 5th day open, the place was full. The menu is the same as I remember it, and the food just as good. We had Tom Kha Gai, pork satay, Pad See Ew, and stuffed squid from the specials page. (A little tough, but really tasty.)

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: OCchowman

                                pad thai + sweet rice and mango all day long. god this place is so good.

                              2. Finally went this past weekend, and I don't get it.

                                I didn't visit Thailand, so don't know what 'authentic' thai food is supposed to taste like.

                                But - everything is sweet. Overly so. We got the fish with sweet & sour (ok so that's supposed to be sweet), clams with chili & basil, pad thai, bbq chicken, beef penang. The pad thai is one of the sweetest version I had anyway, and on top of that they put a pile of sugar on the plate. I don't know why. Any sweeter and it'll be dessert instead.

                                The fish and clams were way overcooked. The fish was fried to within an inch of its life and the clams were rubbery. The sauce for the clams was way, way sweet again.

                                The chicken was passable, but didn't have much favor. Other restaurant version I tried has very pronouced lemongrass flavor. This one was very bland.

                                The only good dish out of the lot was the beef, since instead of the sliced beef it's chunks of beef that's been simmered. However, the sauce was very sweet again, and when I compare to my local favorite thai place, the sauce is less complex and balanced.

                                So in all, with the taste of the food, the drive, and the price, I'll stick with my favorite local dive.

                                9 Replies
                                1. re: notmartha

                                  Are you sure that's sugar on the side? I think it's MSG.

                                  1. re: klee

                                    It's sweet. It's some type of sugar. There's also a small pile of crushed red pepper flakes. We didn't notice them until it's time to box up the leftovers, so out of curiosity I had a little taste.

                                  2. re: notmartha

                                    I didn't care for their food either. I can't wait to go to LOS in LV for some tasty Thai food.

                                    1. re: mrsjoujou

                                      Anyone know if the Beach Blvd. location has durian & sticky rice. A friend at work told me that the a Thai restaurant on GG Blvd had it, by his description, it had to be Thai Nakorn. Found out it was closed when we went by tonight.

                                      Are there any Thai restaurants in OC serving durian? Can get durian shakes at Saigon Cuisine on Bristol & Sunflower, but want some with sticky rice.

                                      1. re: LesT21

                                        Yes, they do, and the GG Blvd is closed due to fire (did you read this thread??). Thai Nakorn, sticky rice with durian and all, is open on the NW corner of Beach and Chapman in Stanton. GG Blvd. will reopen in about 6 months.

                                        1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                          Thanks, now can take care of my durian fix. Can get fresh durian, frozen durian, durian candy and ice cream at the markets in Garden Grove, but like it as desert after Thai food.

                                          Didn't know about this board until i did a Google for Thai Nakorn after going there and finding it closed. My friend didn't know the name of the restaurant, only that they had durian.

                                          I was in the area and used my GPS navigator to find an asian restaurant and it came up with Thai Nakorn on GG Blvd. Was surprised as I only knew of the Thai Nakorn on Stanton, so drove by. Used to go to that one when I was working in Fullerton, but that was 12 years ago. Had been by a couple of months ago and could tell the site was razed, just figured it was that one that had burnt.

                                    2. re: notmartha

                                      Sorry to bump such an old thread, but I just stopped by again and had to write.

                                      This is the second time I've been to the 'new' stanton location. I used to drive 30 mins each way to go to the 'old' stanton location, and hell I used to do it a few times a week. The GG location was a god send until well, you know...

                                      ANyway, we came in around 7 o clock on a sunday night. The placed was packed. 1 step below full. Through the rest of our meal, the place would reach capacity, but enough tables would clear so that there was never a line. There were several large familes there.

                                      Service is still nice, but slow. They seem overworked. Better than the GG location though, but still slow.

                                      We had: the fried fish ball appetizer (sorry forget the name), pad thai, bbq catfish, and tom yung kung.

                                      Fish Ball Appetizer thing - this was new for us. A bit more greasy than I would've liked, but still quite tasty. Dig the cucumber/peanut sauce that it came with.

                                      BBQ Catfish - We usually get the fried catfish with the mango sauce on top, but we opted for this one instead. It came out with a perfectly crunchy crust, while the meat was delicious and tender. No dryness to be found here, and no fishy smell that sometimes accompanies catfish. The sauces that it came with weren't as good as the mango sauce though, but the fish was top notch. $17

                                      Tom Yung Kung - I love their tom yung. It's probably a 5/10 or 6/10 on my scale, but it's burning hot for my dad. Deliciously sweet/spicy/tangy. $14

                                      Pad Thai - Thai Nakorn is my benchmark pad thai. I've never come across anything like it. It doesn't feel overly unhealthy, and comes with sugar/peanuts/chili powder on the side. I dump copius amounts of chili powder on top. Anyway, it's good on so many levels that I could eat it for days. I think in addition to the absurdly delicious noodles, the contrast between sweet/spicy/tangy is awesome.

                                      Sweet Rice with Mango - also a top thai nakorn item IMHO. The rice is perfect, the coconut milk is delicious, and the mangos are a perfect compliment.

                                      Beyond everything else, I find Thai Nakorn to be one of the most consistent ethnic restaurants. I've NEVER had a bad meal here.

                                      1. re: ns1

                                        I now work down the road from the GG Blvd. location and I wish, wish, WISH they'd rebuild. I could WALK.

                                        1. re: Das Ubergeek

                                          We've had this conversation before in another thread ;)

                                    3. haha I love that there's a post on here for Thai Nakorn.. in my opinion probably the best Thai food in the Southern California area. For those of you who asked what to order here, well several of my favorite dishes include: BBQ Beef Thai Style, Pad Thai (can be made vegetarian) either way it is A-MAZE-ING, especially if you squeeze lime over the top and toss... their Shrimp Salad is delicious (EXTRA SPICY, but delicious, I can probably take only one bite and I'm done 'cause it's so hot), Chicken with Long Beans (can be mild or spicy but better when spicy, usually on their Specials list in menu), Basil with Beef (now, you can get it with other meats but it is best with beef and this dish was one of the spiciest dishes for me), Tom Yung Soup with Shrimp (too spicy? try adding a tiny spoonful or two of rice and spritz some fresh lime over, stir and enjoy), and their Fried Fish with Fresh mango salsa is a crowd pleaser (on the Specials list in menu) I've been to many Thai restaurants, in LA, San Francisco, San Diego, throughout the OC... but Thai Nakorn has been the most impressive and if you haven't traveled to Orange County, now you have a reason... if you already live here, well, there are no excuses. If you like Thai food, you'll love the comfort cooking of Thai Nakorn. Most dishes can be made milder for those who can't handle the heat like me.. and for the vegetarians, you can 86 the meats from their fried rice and noodle dishes, as well as the soups, and of course the salads. For dessert, hands down winner is Mango with Sticky Rice. Hope this answers some questions for some of you...