The Same Same but Different Award: Pok Pok Ny

RECOMMENDED: Food & Drink Awards 2013 A few years back we heard about a restaurant in Portland, Oregon, where a farang chef was serving some of...

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Laap plaa duuk yaang at Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Wings at Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Muu kham wanat Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Kai yaang at Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Cha ca la vong at Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Kaeng hung lehat Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Pok Pok Ny

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Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Pok Pok Ny

RECOMMENDED: Food & Drink Awards 2013

A few years back we heard about a restaurant in Portland, Oregon, where a farang chef was serving some of the best Thai food in the country. Lines were long—two hours if you didn’t get there at opening—but the food, when we tried it, turned out to be well worth the wait. Flash forward to 2013, and New York’s new Pok Pok is even better than the West Coast original. What do you expect? We don’t do second-rate. Instead of an annex, we got a new flagship—just as the ubiquitous Thailand T-shirt slogan says: “Same same but different.” Andy Ricker, the great chef behind both spots, decamped to the city to work here full-time, raising the bar on the fiery, funky fare he obsessively researches on annual food trips to Thailand. Yes, the wait-time for a taste of his garlicky muu kham waan, incendiary duck laap and Chiang Mai–style khao soi can be interminable. Bangkok, though, is a 25-hour plane ride away. Pok Pok Ny, 127 Columbia St at Kane St, Red Hook, Brooklyn (718-923-9322, pokpokny.com)

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