Signing for Her Supper—Friend and former Alibi Food Editor Gwyneth Doland can add one more notch to her crumb-speckled belt, as she's just become a published cookbook author! The book is Cilantro Secrets (Rio Nuevo, paperback, $12.95), which she'll launch at a signing event on Thursday, July 27, at Jennifer James' Gulp (3128 Central SE, 268-4729). From 5:30-8:30 p.m., the girls next door (that is, the Graze chefs) will prepare a selection of herby snacks from the book, offered to the guests of Ms. Doland at no extra charge. Settle into a cilantro mojito and pick Gwyn's brain about mole, the subject of her next book in the Cook West single-ingredient series. Oh, and buy a book. She's got a pile of cilantro-inspired grocery receipts that aren't paying for themselves. “I will write anything on the title page of that book if you pay me $12.95,” she says. Cash or check are perfectly acceptable.
At 7:30 p.m., people begin to stand two bodies deep at the bar, popping out through knuckles of space like olives in a fist. It's an impressive draw for a weekend night, let alone a Thursday. It's just short of amazing when you consider that this particular bar opened one week ago.
Rabieng Thong? What’s in a name, anyway? I can recall my school years like they were yesterday, and I don’t think I had a single teacher who ever pronounced my last name correctly without a linguistic tutorial beforehand. I got some pretty festive variations like “Whirlitz,” “Whoo-letz” and my personal fave, “Whore-letz.” It’s Wohletz (Wall-letz), dammit. So I know how the cats at Rabieng Thong feel. It’s hard to have name recognition when people keep jacking it up.
At some point down the line Thai food became synonymous with comfort food for me. It was my family’s favorite dining out cuisine when I was young, and now I have a lot of good nostalgia wrapped up in the smell of lemongrass and curry. Tom kha gai, papaya salad and pad see ew are my go-to orders when I’m sick or just craving something warming and familiar, so I’ve visited most of the Thai spots in town to find some of my favorites of each. That GrubHub bill is getting a little out of control at this point, honestly.
Here’s a few of my favorite spots to order Thai in the Duke City. May they bring you many spicy tears and great evenings.