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Portland's 40 Best Restaurants
"Arguably America’s finest Thai restaurant..."
Best Food Town
"Langbaan, which introduces eaters to the different regions of Thailand."
36 hours in Portland
"watch video on the article below."
Cuisine of the year
"PoMo’s 2014 Restaurant of the Year is still on a winning streak, unlocking the herb-zinging secrets of Thailand in choreographed evenings—each month trekking to a different region. Even by Langbaan's standards, June’s Chiang Mai menu.."
The 50 best things to eat and drink of 2015
"For me, the flavor of the moment is funky and pungent, with a balance between acidity, salt, and spice.."
Oregon 1st restaurant to receive 4 stars rating
"Meals here are a landscape, with citrus and fish sauce as the reeds and mud, vegetables the foliage, meat and fish the beasts and fowl and tropical fruits the radiant bursts of a Technicolor sunset."
GQ most outstanding restaurants in America 2015
"Langbaan is welcoming and generous, the food homey and gentle. Only the recipes are complicated, like the handwoven egg net enclosing pork, peanuts, and much more. (There's always much more with Thai.) Live scallop sitting in a crispy cup made from coconut milk and rice flour was so sumptuous I wondered if it was intended to pass for dessert, and the salads contained tuna ceviche or marinated pork jowl—my kind of greens. This is the first Thai food I've ever eaten that made me wish I lived over there."
2015 James Beard award semifinalist
"Best new restaurant class of 2015 "
The Essential 38 Portland Restaurants January 2015
"It's a tall order for a chef to change the face of Thai cooking on Pok Pok's home turf. But Earl Ninsom is doing just that. In his cozy supperclub behind PaaDee, diners get a taste of a lighter more elegant Thai cuisine, crafted with precision and refinement. "
Top 30 restaurants in America with a female chef
"One pull of the wall-mounted meat grinder in Portland's popular PaaDee restaurant releases a swinging bookcase door, and suddenly, paradise is found: a pearl of a 20-seat space, Langbaan, the perfect place to conduct a romantic rendezvous or eat your weight in perfectly spiced Thai. A team of three run this restaurant-within-a-restaurant, but the inspired spicing is courtesy of chef Rassamee Ruaysuntia, whose muse is the ancient text of a Thai princess who shared her obsession with healthy eating."
Grazers: Langbaan, Portland
"Visiting Langbaan feels like the best kind of secret. The dining room is visible from the street but only accessible via a small, dark hallway in Earl Ninsom’s restaurant PaaDee. Once the hostess swings back a bookshelf, Langbaan’s intimate, warmly lit dining room reveals itself—along with the smiling faces of its three chefs, who prepare each of the meal’s courses on the counter in full view of each of the restaurant’s nightly customers. Even if you’re not a fan of Thai cuisine, Langbaan is by far one of the best places to enjoy a meal in Portland."
Portland Monthly's Restaurant of the year 2014
"Behind the counter, a trio of Thai cooks in baseball caps and nifty butcher aprons communicate through what seems like a mysterious sonar system. Their eye darts and head nods somehow combine to produce the wonders to come: herbaceous snacks, complex soups, ecstatic salads, curries swooped up with smoky pastes, and, always, intriguing desserts. It quickly adds up to one of America’s best Thai food experiences. "
Notes from Portland, Take two
"Owner Akkapong Earl Nimson and Rassamee Ruaysuntia seem to be in a kind of wordless trance, working together, silently tasting the balance of flavors, plating each intricate dish. They handed the first plate of their tasting menu across the table - miang som (above) - and it took me right back to Thailand. This is Thai food as I have not experienced it in any other restaurant in America.."
The Oregonian’s 2014 Restaurant of the Year
"In 2014, food fans looking for the next big thing in Portland dining have found it at inventive back-room supper clubs, underground pop-ups, down side alleys and in warehouses, on close-in farms and the closer-in living rooms of local line cooks. Anywhere, in short, but traditional restaurant dining rooms. In a year with no true breakout restaurant, culinary happenings such as Langbaan and Holdfast, and a dozen others besides, have pushed Portland's food boundaries further than anything else."
2 of our dishes made 'The 50 best dishes from this year’s Diner'
"Gang bai bua bok goong lae lum yai: curry of Asian pennywort, longan, spotted prawn and holy basil topped with fried lemongrass from Langbaan, the back-of-house Thai restaurant featured in our 2014 Restaurant of the Year story."
Charting the Rise of Portland’s Hottest UnRestaurants
"At Langbaan, opened in February, PaaDee owner and Bangkok native Akkapong “Earl” Ninsom reconsiders Thai food for a new generation of Portland diners. For these savvy thrill-seekers, the aggressive, straight-from-Chiang Mai flavors of Andy Ricker’s nationally celebrated Pok Pok are now the norm. At Langbaan, choreographed evenings thrash with herbs, refinement, and a new sense of excitement: “seriously old-school Thai cooking,” as Ninsom calls it, replete with tastes rarely seen stateside. A night in this back room moves from dried baby snakehead fish, crushed with fried shallots over coconut rice, to an epiphanic treat born in Bangkok’s Chinatown: black sesame dumplings in a sweet-hot ginger broth that zings straight to the brain."
Jewels from Siam
"While PaaDee is billed as Thai comfort food, its hidden jewel, Lang Baan, is pushing far outside of those cozy confines and into the exciting realms of refined and challenging plates. Like a salmon ceviche with Thai eggplant and orange, Lang Baan is the kind of thing Portland didn't know it needed until it was served to us, perfectly spiced."
Is Langbaan Portland’s Best New Restaurant?
"The cozy, cramped kitchen looks like a foodie’s vision of a Bangkok night market, with herbs everywhere, soup vapors billowing, and moody shadows creeping from table lamps. It only hints at what’s to come: a two-hour tasting menu of traditional snacks, coconut-chunked soups, raw dishes, chile relishes, grilled pig parts, and some shockingly delightful desserts buried in salty coconut cream or infused with Thai candle smoke. No choices. No substitutions. Plunk down $40, settle in, and let the kitchen do the work. At least so far, this is the food of the year."
Lang On Recipes
"Menus change monthly. March featured Royal Thai, and April Southern Thai. Northern Thai is next, in May. But each of the first two menus have begun with a snack of miang som-o, which compresses every flavor group in the Thai repertoire into a one-bite salad: salty-savory shrimp, sweet coconut, a jolt of chili and a tart burst of pomelo on an earthy, bitter betel leaf. It doesn’t so much cleanse the palate as prime it for a show, like a bite before a kiss. Also stalwart on the snack menu is sticky rice infused with watermelon water, then left to dry into little rice-cake crisps. These serve as ground for a Dungeness crab salad or, even better, a citric, sweet-coconut dish showcasing the natural affinity of pork for peanuts."
'One of the best meals of our lives'
"My trio of diners agreed it was one of the best meals of our lives. But we have to return again and again as the menu changes monthly. The April, 2014 menu was focused on southern Thailand, with seafood in most of the courses. May will go north."
LangBaan is a Thai Breaker
"At 34, Bangkok native and PaaDee owner Akkapong Earl Nimson has imagined a night unlike any other in Portland: a Thai tasting menu, changing every few weeks with dishes rarely seen outside of their home turf, drawn from family recipes and former workers in the royal Thai palace kitchen. If February’s opening dinner was any indication, Langbaan could shape up to be one of the best tables in town, thrashing with heat, herbs, and excitement."
LangBaan Thai restaurant, a refined island amid Portland street-food sea
"The restaurant likes to riff, successfully, on the textural similarities between fruit and the fruit of the sea. Plump lobster was tossed with lychee-like rambutan fruit and Asian pennywort, the broad-leafed green, in a milky coconut dressing. Later, salmon ceviche arrived with slices of orange and Thai eggplant, all spiked with ginger and fish sauce. Soon, dishes began to pile up on the table. Smoked trout in a fiery chile relish competed for real estate with knuckles of pork ribs and belly in a rich marinade. A bowl of grilled halibut in galangal-rich coconut broth with fermented rice and rust-red landed nearby, four nuggets of coriander-rubbed Thai beef jerky on the side."