Walla Walla has 4 Thai restaurants. Which is awesome. As a curry, peanut sauce, and Phad Thai enthusiast, I frequent any and all establishments serving Thai that I can find. Because there are several options–which is pretty remarkable considering the size of Walla Walla–everyone has their favorite. I have had more debates than may be reasonable over the relative merits of Thai Ploy’s service and Phuomy’s ambiance. But my favorite Thai place and, indeed, one of my favorite spots in Walla Walla (okay, technically College Place) overall, is a little hole-in-the-wall restaurant called Bangkok 103.

Bangkok 103 is run by a husband and wife. She’s Thai, he is American. It’s a decidedly no-frills place with plastic plates, stars-and-stripes tablecloths, and florescent lighting. But I like that aspect of it; the couple devotes nothing to the setting and everything to the food. Which is to die for. Portions come out massive and rolling with steam–everything is made from scratch the moment you order it. The couple chats amicably with you throughout the meal, advising you what to order, ensuring you have enough rice, and offering tips on how to transport the inevitable leftovers.

In many ways, Bangkok 103 exemplifies much of what I so appreciate about Walla Walla itself. It’s a microcosm for the unique meld of old and new, excellence and down-to-earth rusticity, as well as a great place to see the Walla Walla brand of friendliness and hospitality on display. I recommend the restaurant to everyone–for the yellow curry and a reminder of what makes Walla Walla so special.

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