Date Night: Night + Market, West Hollywood

Night Market

It’s been awhile since we’ve posted date nights. We haven’t stopped eating out-in fact, we’ve had some great restaurant meals lately where we’ve left the camera behind. It’s much more enjoyable dining experience to not worry about getting that perfect shot as your co-diners wait as you snap that 10th perfect shot.  Having said that, we were invited to a special tasting at a discounted price to Night + Market, a new restaurant by Kris Yenbamroong, the young chef of current West Hollywood staple, Talésai, a restaurant started by his parents back in the 80’s.   Adjacent to Talesai and sharing the same entrance, Night + Market represents the antithesis of  his parent’s original restaurant and strives to be a much more casual dining experience (think art gallery minimalism and communal tables) where Kris serves small bites often found in the night markets of Thailand.   
kor moo yang

The small bites are definitely the stars of the show.  The kor moo yang, grilled fatty pork toro is a must.  Perfectly charred, the texture is deliciously firm, slightly chewy, gizzard-esque and goes great with a cold beer.

sai krok isaan

Another unusual but fantastic treat is the grilled fermented pork sausauge, sai krok isaan. The fermentation adds a slightly sour note that, to really enjoy to the fullest extent, must be eaten with a nibble of bird eye chili. This is very similar to Vietnamese nem chua, elevated by the extra step of grilling.

moo ping

Another satisfying dish is the pork satay skewers, moo ping. We often find these type of skewers to be overwhelmingly sweet and peanut-y at most places, but here, they are bathed in condensed milk and the result is very juicy and subtly sweet slices of pork, perfectly complemented by the pickled condiments.

peek gai tod

To quote a friend, you can’t ever go wrong with fried chicken. Using a batter recipe from his village of Chieng Rai, the result is an extra crispy and juicy wing we were left wanting more.

papaya salad

While there are several familiar items on the menu such as fried rice, Kris does a nice job of adding his own personal twists, for example the green mango salad is topped with crispy lop cheung chinese sausage and friend rice is mixed with chunks of sweet dungeness crabs.

dungeness fried rice
And not everything is small bites. Noodle dishes such as pad thai and the requisite hot pot tom yum soup is also on the menu, which changes frequently, often with new seafood and meat entrees we’re eager to try.
tom yum soup

There’s a thoughtful selection of beer and wine to match the flavors of Thai cuisine as well as special cocktails. We particularly enjoyed having your own keg of Chang beer on tap at the table, which prompted temptations of chugging straight from the spigot.

chang beer

Subtract what you would expect from an Asian night market, i.e. the squatting on kindergarten sized plastic chairs, the organized chaos of hawkers and tourists, and smoke from tuk-tuks and insert West Hollywood minimalist artsy hip and you have Night + Market, a place to explore new and interesting dishes not traditionally found on Thai menus.

Night + Market
9043 Sunset Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069

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