I love Thai food.  I dream of Thai food.  My husband and I honeymooned in Thailand and ate some of the best food of our lives.  Where I live, the Thai food is not so great.
For my birthday, we went to Vegas.  We had the best Thai food outside of Thailand in Vegas.  Not in a casino.  Not in a fancy hotel.  The best Thai food in Vegas is in a crappy strip mall off the Strip on Sahara Blvd.  You need to take a cab.  It’s called Lotus of Siam and two months later, I’m still dreaming of my meal.  Get there early: it’s crowded.  Or make a reservation, if you can get one.

We ordered a whole cod fish that arrived wrapped in foil — this place is NOT fancy — it was perfumed with lemon grass, ginger and who knows what else — but it was the most complex, tangy, delicious flavor and texture I have ever had on fish.  Even the Pad Thai was slightly different than regular Pad Thai — not only in that it wasn’t too sweet (common mistake in the US), but the noodles were rounder and thinner and the sour taste was pushed a little more to the forefront — all to good effect.  The Larb was VERY spicy — and we had ordered medium spice.  In Thailand, that is medium spice, but here, it was HOT.

So what does this have to do with Traveling Tek Tips?  So glad you asked.  I found the restaurant via Yelp.com.  There were hundreds of reviews and the reviews had many superlatives in them.  I figured, how could we go wrong?  If you’re in a strange city, don’t just rely on the concierge of your hotel: go to Yelp.  Read the reviews.  They even have a free iPhone app.

Stay tuned for Jitlada: supposedly the best Thai in Los Angeles and a rival for best Thai food outside of Thailand…