Zen Noodle: Crispy Pork Gang and Grill

Small world… about a year ago I ran into one of my Thai friends eating at this place, she was having som tam, green papaya salad, which I have yet to try, but it looked great! Since then I had been meaning to sample this place, Crispy Pork Gang and Grill on Hollywood Blvd. Located in Thai Town, the menu is a lot more authentic than the generic Americanized Thai places I have been familiar with forever.


Today was the day and I took the train up to Hollywood. I ordered a Thai iced tea, which was yummy and cheap, and the first thing on the menu, a small bowl of pork and shrimp tom yum soup.

At $3.50 for a small, this was a deal! The waitress kindly asked me if I would like them to leave out the pork liver… I said ok. I didn’t want my first step into real Thai food to take me too far! The soup was delicious! The broth is slightly sour and very rich, rice noodles, bbq pork slices, small balls of ground pork, fish balls and small shrimp with green onion. I asked for mild, another capitulation to my American-ness, and it was tasty while bringing just a little heat.

The soup was enough food for me but I really wanted to try their specialty, crispy pork! I ordered Chinese broccoli over rice with crispy pork. $6.50 and really delicious, I couldn’t finish it and took the rest home for a snack.

Small world, because on the train ride home I ran into the same Thai friend who introduced me to the place! She was late and I wasn’t able to get the story out before she had to rush off, but thanks for the heads up on the real Thai, Patti!

PS: they are open 24 hours and they deliver.

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