Emporium Thai – An EncinoMom Top Pick!
We shared an amazing meal at Emporium Thai Cuisine in Westwood! The flavorful selections we sampled were complex, fresh and delicious. Even though we had plenty to eat, this tasting has left us craving more of these exotic flavors every day since! We recommend taking your time and ordering whatever pleases your fancy. You really, really can’t go wrong here.
It was one of those sweltering September days. The cool dark interior of Emporium Thai Cuisine was a welcome respite from the bright mid day heat. We started things off with an Iced Coffee and a Thai Iced Tea. A cool, creamy, deliciousness settled over our cozy booth.
Since neither of us had been here before, we let Honey Bee direct our experience. Knowledgable and gracious, she guided us through the menu rich in Southern Thai cuisine. We told her our preferences and she delivered up a scintillating array of dishes that fulfilled our desires and complimented one another. My guest and I discovered first hand why some of Emporium Thai’s signature dishes are so popular. . . and addictive.
There was something about the seasoning (mild chili, lime juice, onions, mint and cilantro) for the Chicken Lettuce Wraps that was sensational. I was completely satisfied with just that and my Thai Iced Tea. Honey Bee suggested we try the Thai Dumpling, too and we happily obliged even though we were no longer starving. The savory chicken dumplings (we sinfully ordered fried) with mixed Thai spices were served with plum sauce for a sweet touch.
All of the dishes presented to us were a beautiful mix of textures and colors, as pleasing to the eye as they were to the palate. Next we sampled the Coco Mango Salad with Shrimp, a nice twist on the usual offering of green papaya. Unbelievably, there was more to come!
Honey Bee urged us to try a noodle dish. I thought we would enjoy the Pad Thai, but she steered us to Royal Pad See Ew Veggie, a light mix of double vegetables and half the regular amount of rice noodles for something a little more unique to Emporium Thai. Just yum! She also suggested Crying Tiger Beef, sweet and hot, to go with it. The beef is marinated with Thai herbs, thinly sliced, chargrilled and served with chili sauce. The beef was so tender, you could have cut it with a spoon! By this time, we were both in a food stupor. Each dish so extraordinary and better than the one before – as if you could rank the experience that way.
Did I Mention It’s Addictive?
Sorry if this review is a little gushy, but this meal was so good and memorable and fun, it’s hard to be critical. The Southern Curry at this family owned establishment lives up to its reputation. It was unbelievably good. Originally from the family’s 30 year-old recipe in Pakpanang, Nakhon Sri Thammarat Thailand, this curry will keep you coming back for more. Featuring Jicama, basil and bell pepper, the fresh, light, crunch of the vegetables contrasts the silky sauce to create the perfect party in your mouth.
We had lots of left overs. Two people simply could not consume this much food in one sitting. I shared the leftovers with friends who were equally enthusiastic about these dishes even after reheating. The biggest take away is to note that I was sad when all the food was gone. Sad, like when you don’t want to read the last page of a novel because it marks the end of your relationship with the characters you’ve come to love. I wanted to go back to Emporium Thai. Again. The next day. For breakfast. I’m nearly weeping writing this. It was that good.
Lastly, we shared an order of Fresh Mango with Sweet Sticky Rice for dessert. There was an echo of coconut in the sauce that was the final stroke of deliciousness on an amazing meal. Prices are extremely reasonable. Most dishes run around $12.95. Parking is terrible. There is metered street parking, but we parked far away and walked several blocks. I’m not complaining, just letting you know. It’s in Westwood, ON Westwood Boulevard a little South of Wilshire. Take the time to figure it out, Emporium Thai is worth the effort.
Details and Background
Emporium Thai’s mission is simple, “to create a memorable and wonderful Thai dining experience that you’ll return to often, and rave about to your friends.” Mission accomplished. Established in 2000 by the Sungkamee family originally from Southern Thailand, Emporium Thai’s menu offers delectable cuisine at affordable prices, using the finest and freshest local vegetables, meats and seafood, purchased daily from local purveyors. Emporium Thai offers a variety of gluten-free, peanut-free, vegetarian and vegan options and the entire menu is available for catering. Delivery within a 3 mile radius.
Just minutes from UCLA, Emporium Thai’s award winning cuisine is an EncinoMom Top Pick and was voted one of the 100 Best Thai Restaurants in the US.
Open for lunch and dinner:
Monday through Thursday 11:00 AM – 10:30 PM
Friday and Saturday 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM
Dinner only on Sundays 5:00 PM – 10:30 PM